Monday, February 27, 2012

Kryolan: First Impressions, Swatches, Review

I'm tempted to say I'll never buy another shadow again, but we all know that's a huge lie.  However, if there's anything in the world that could convince, it's the combination of both Naked palettes and this baby right here.

Introducing...the Kryolan 18 Bold Colours Palette V2: Fashion.


Saturday, February 25, 2012

Essie: Lady Like

This colour is nothing you've ever seen on me before.  It's one of those dusty mauve-pink hybrids with zero shimmer.  I'm not sure what's going on in my head, but I never wear colours like this.  In fact, this whole time I've had it on I've been feeling rather undecided about it all, but I can't stop looking at it.  I'm thinking of layering a glitter over it to make it

I picked it up a couple months ago in a dustbin -- my favourite place to hunt for polishes.  I rarely pay full price for the new releases, I prefer to hunt through the random bowl of polish near the register.  This one was broken up from a set of minis from the Brand New Bag collection, and it was buried underneath a pile of full-sized OPI Ginger Bells.  It looked lonely.

That half moon you see at the tip of my nails?  That's the line you get after you Shellac yourself.  I think the last one I got was in November so...yeah.   Be warned.

I'm not sure what this whole nude polish thing means.  I need recommendations!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Review: Jack Black vs. My Favourite Night Balm

I consistently mistake one for the other.

My Favourite Night Balm was something I bought on a whim because I'd been lusting after Jack Black for so long.  Apparently they've been available at Sephora this entire time.  I think I've used both on and off for two months now.

In one corner...

Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm
Price: $9 CAD
Volume: .25 oz
Scent: Vanilla and Lavender

I love that this ultra-moisturizing lipbalm has SPF 25, is in no way sticky and absorbs really quickly.  But not in that I-didn't-put-anything-on way, in that whoa-that-asborbed-quickly way.  LOVE.  This is great to wear alone or for any lip prep.  I usually put this on before bed and once in the morning and I don't feel any need to apply more often. Occasionally I do, but only because it feels so damn good.

And in the other...

C.O. Bigelow My Favourite Night Balm
Price: $7 CAD
Volume: 0.34 oz
Scent: none on the label, but smells like something vanilla-y or sugary.

This is the most high-gloss lip balm I've ever tried.  It reminds me of my long-lost love, Dior Addict Ultra Gloss in 001; neither of them really sink into your lips.  Rather, they sit on top and give your lips the most beautiful lacquered finish.  It's moisturizing, but it feels more like it's sealing in the existing moisture in your lips rather than adding any at all.  This is meant for use at night, so there's no SPF.

Verdict?  As an actual lip balm, I prefer Jack Black's version.  I always forget to use sun protection on my lips and it's the one part of my face that gets oddly rough.  Apparently that means your lips are sunburned.  Bottom line, Jack Black ekes out a little more moisture than C.O. Bigelow's version.  However, I do recommend My Favourite Night Balm for high-shine lip looks.  I've been using it for shiny nude lip days, but I don't really use it for moisture at night because I find it gets all over my pillowcases.

Any other lip balms I desperately need to try?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Today's Purchases

One last hurrah before I lock myself away for essay writing.

Monda Brush Cleaner
Kryolan 18 Colour Palette in V2 (Bright)
Clinique All About Eyes Serum (Roll-On)

Make me feel better by telling me what you've purchased lately!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Review: MAC Motif

When I was 13, my mom took me to a MAC store when we were in New York to make my first makeup purchases.  I ended up getting MAC Nymphette, which I still adore to this day.  I think it's one of the few make up items I've repurchased.  Motif was one of the colours in that quad and I remember loving its gorgeous pink iridescence more than anything.  The base colour is a golden peach shade, but its pink duochrome sets it apart from all other nude lid shades.

I've been playing with it more recently, but not on my lid.  For my lid I've been going all dark and matte.  This leaves the option for a little shimmer on the cheek, and as much as I love Mary Lou-Manizer, South Beach and High Beam, I've been looking for something a little different.  Enter Motif.

I had a hard time capturing its highlight-y goodness on my face, so I swatched it over NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk and Black Bean to show you the pink duochrome.

Try it.  Love it.  But maybe not if you're lighter than NC20.

Friday, February 17, 2012

On my Vanity: Brushes

I need to put this out there:  brushes are my straight up kryptonite-candy-to-a-superkid weakness.

I don't use every single one of these brushes on myself -- these are also the brushes I reach for most often when I do tutorials and looks on other people, etc.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

On my Vanity: Pencil-shaped things

Following the rest of my vanity series -- Part 1 and Part 2 here -- today I'm going to do everything that sits in my recycled jam jar.  My thing with pencil storage is that it has to be something that stays the same width all the way through.  For example, things like mason jars have a narrower mouth, so you can't fit as many products in there, but the jar itself will take up the same amount of space.

I'm that person who always wants to try new mascaras in the vain hope that something will actually improve them, so I've currently got four in rotation.  I'm not allowed to buy mascara (among other things) for a while.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

On my Vanity: Everyday Makeup

I think this is the part of my setup I hate the most -- I need compartments, people! This container was the packaging for a mug I bought, and I figured, oh that'll be great to have my everyday makeup all packed away and out of sight.  I forgot to account for everything's height.

From tallest to smallest!  Sort of.

Again, I feel as though I must warn you...I don't wear makeup every day.  In fact, most days I don't.  Think of this more as my...if I wear makeup, this (plus a few other things from my collection) is what I'll wear.  Go big or go home.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

On my Vanity: Perfumes

I'm terrible at perfume.  I can't describe scents properly, I have no idea what sandalwood or musk are, let alone what they're supposed to smell like.  And more often than not, I'm that person going, "...I don't smell anything."

I usually end up picking scents based on the names of their ingredients -- anything that says patchouli or bergamot, I'm there.  I like the way that word looks.  Other times, I'll actually find something I like and it's enough for me.  The only thing I know I don't like is anything that says Chanel No. 5, because that smells like a recently embalmed alcoholic.

Whatever scents I do choose, I end up never wearing them.  It's kind of like me and jewelry -- I just never think about it.  I'll put together an outfit, but accessories that are not shoes just don't occur to me.  It's not like makeup where I'm simply too lazy to put my face on, I just don't think about it.  It's pretty hideous habit to have, averaging at $70/mL.  Hideous.

Here they are, in no particular order!

La Prairie Silver Rain 
This was the first perfume I bought in university, and possibly my third perfume purchase ever.  My mom uses the LP skincare line and they'd given her a sample.  Honestly, I think the reason I liked the sample so much was that it was a mini version of this silver teardrop.  The scent itself I like, but it's quite a nighttime scent -- all powdery and vanilla-y.  It leans a little mature, so I don't wear it that much. 
apple (...really?), anise, bergamot (!), gardenia, magnolia, jasmine, patchouli leaves (ha!), vanilla and musk.

Hanae Mori Butterfly
When I went on to see what people said about this perfume, there was all this kerfuffle about a blue box or a pink box.  Mine came with blue butterflies.  I think that means it's Eau de Parfum.  I heard about this from a profile on Jessica Stam, a Canadian model, so I decided to buy it without even trying it.  I'm that girl.
strawberries, bilberries, black currant, bulgarian rose, jasmine, ylang-ylang, sandalwood, almond, praline (LOVE)

Bathwerks Sugar Cookie
This is everything I've ever wanted.  It legitimately smells like cookies.  Every time I wear it, someone always goes, "...why does it smell like pastry?"  Because creamed butter and sugar is the best thing to happen to humankind, that's why.
Sugar cookie?

Dior Miss Dior Cherie
Apparently this is everyone and their mother's favourite perfume.  I don't blame them.  I feel so clean when I use it.  Even though I think it's supposed to be marketed towards a younger woman, I can't help but get a "grown-up" feeling from the scent.  Unlike the first three perfumes on this list, this is the lightest-smelling.  All the others are kind of heavy and gourmand-y, but this is just...light.
bitter orange, gardenia, white musk (seriously, what is musk?)

Pacifica French Lilac
What, a fifth?  If you look behind Miss Dior Cherie, there's a little purple container hiding there.  That's a solid perfume from Pacifica.  Sidenote: I'm totally lemming their Egyptian Bergamot Rose candle.  Anyway, I love the smell of lilacs, and if I could drown myself in that scent, I would definitely wear perfume every day.  This is the closest I've come to an actual lilac scent.  Most of the time they're too synthetic.

Some scents I'm lemming?  I just broke my Ralph Lauren Romance rollerball, so I wouldn't mind replacing that.  That's quite a good scent as well for every day -- it's even lighter than Miss Dior Cherie.  I also want Armani's Acqua di Gioia which communicates one word: FRESH.

Happy Valentine's/Single Awareness/Lover Day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

What's on my Vanity: Overview

By vanity, I obviously mean desk where I pretend to do work.

Anyway, I'm sure someone else does this: instead of studying, I clean.  Actually, I had one exam period where I baked incessantly, but that's neither here nor there. Nor 15 pounds on my...everywhere.  This weekend though, has been all about cleaning/reorganizing.

I haven't actually changed too much since leaving my apartment would actually be considered not studying, but since acquiring a few new things and carving more of a daily weekly almost never face routine of sorts, I've decided to shift some things around.  I'm not totally happy with what I've got at the moment -- I think I'd like something a little cleaner-looking.  Maybe in acrylic?  Anyway, I'll sort out a proper daily storage system.  I don't even want to think about my collection storage -- bad can of worms to open, that.

non-uniformly-shaped makeup

cylindrical things




I'm certain you all read Into the Gloss.  Think of this as a really, really in-depth ITG article broken into four parts over the week.  If you haven't been reading up on Emily's medicine cabinet snooping adventures, I'm not sure we can be friends.  Get over there right now.

Wanna share your storage/organization secrets?  Comment below or link me to anything you've written! 

Sunday, February 12, 2012


One of my all-time favourite nail colours.  And guess what?  It's drugstore.  That almost never happens.

Top coat: Poshe
Polish: Revlon 730 Valentine, two coats.
Base coat: Sally Hansen Triple Strong Nail Fortifier.  That was a mouthful.
Cuticles:  It's midterm week, I'm nervous.  Hence their state.

I realized that the best place to take nail photos is in my elevator -- the pot lights give me the truest colour.  Am I worried someone will wonder what I'm doing?  A little. 

Now that I think of it...this better not be discontinued.  I haven't seen it at Shoppers Drug Mart in a while, but I don't usually peruse the Revlon polishes.  I think they retail for about $7 CAD?  Don't quote me.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Why do I keep getting Naked?

Better question: how can you not get Naked2?

First Impressions:

  • The way the Shoppers Drug Mart announced it before the release was: "Naked 1 is warm, Naked 2 is cool."  It makes sense -- Naked2 leans a lot more silvery and purple -- but there are a few colours here and there that are warmer than in the original palette
  • This new palette has a lot less colour variation.  Not in the sense that you're getting the same colour over and over, but you don't get a lot of very light or very dark colours (except the black).

Double-ended brush

L: Naked2, R: Naked1

Top: Naked1, Bottom: Naked2

Top: Naked1, Bottom: Naked2


Foxy, Half Baked, Bootycall, Chopper

Tease, Snakebite, Suspect, Pistol

Verve, YDK, Busted, Blackout

Price: This palette retails for $60 CAD -- about $10 more than the original.  Of course, if you really want to make your skin crawl, it's only $50 USD.  That's right.  However, I did get mine on a 20x Optimum points event (my American friends, it's a drugstore points-collecting craze that's taken us Canadians over), so technically it was cheaper than buying it across the border.  That's what I'm telling myself.

Quality: The shadow quality is just as good as the last one -- shimmers in Naked2 are just as creamy as in Naked1, and mattes are characteristically less pigmented, but not bad compared to others that I've tried.  I do wish the payoff was more consistent among the shades, but the only one I'm particularly disappointed with is Foxy.  I'm not quite sure who this colour would work on, but I'll play around with it and let you know.

Packaging:  It's exactly the same size as the old Naked, which pleases me to no end and I have no idea why!  This one comes in a metal box, kind of like those pencil cases you get in Japanese stationery stores.  The velvet case on my Naked1 hasn't gotten too dirty yet, but I can see people liking the fact that they can wipe this one down.  The mirror is also much larger, taking up the entire inside of the lid.

Extras:  I haven't bothered to try the lipgloss yet, simply because it looks like a neutral enough colour that it likely won't show up on anyone's lips.  Tod tried it and she really doesn't like the minty, plumping feeling that you get from it.  The double-ended brush is a nice touch, but it makes me wish I'd gotten the original Naked palette during its first run when they released it with a double-ended eyeliner.  Imagine, all your eye needs in two compact cases!  Except mascara.

In my teaser post yesterday, I showed you the following photo.  These are the most similar colours in the palettes.

Each pair of swatches: Naked1 on the right, Naked2 on the left
  1. Smog and Snakebite aren't actually dupes for each other.  Smog is much more gold and Snakebite is darker/browner
  2. Sidecar is a little less orange and much less glittery than YDK, but otherwise these colours are quite close if you apply YDK sparingly.
  3. Contrary to this whole Naked1=warm and Naked2=cool thing, Virgin is slightly cooler than Bootycall.  I wouldn't call Bootycall warm though -- it's more neutral than anything.
  4. True to our warm/cool theory, Hustle is a slightly warmer version of Busted.

So, Naked 1 or Naked 2? 

Get Naked 1 if...
  •  If you like to do lots of different looks -- the shade range will help you create a different eye each time you use it
  • You look better in warm-toned shadows.  I.e., if your favourite eyeshadow from MAC is Amber Lights, Woodwinked, Soft Brown or Mulch, get this one.
Get Naked 2 if...
  • If you don't like to experiment with your look but would like to have a few colour scheme options
  • You look better in cool-toned shadows. I.e., if your favourite MAC eyeshadows include Patina, Satin Taupe, Club and Smut.
Or if you're like me: get both.  You won't regret it.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Tutorial: Brown Smokey Eye with a Twist

You know those days when you don't have anywhere to go but you feel like getting dressed up?  Thursday was one of those days (except that Tod and I had somewhere to go...the laundry room).  I really wanted to play with makeup and film a video, but I had no clue what I wanted to film.  When in doubt, grab three items and go to town.

First up: TooFaced Natural Eye Palette.  Review and swatches here.
Second: Lancome Pop n' Palette, used in this tutorial.
Last: BellaPierre Shimmer 9 stack.  Review and swatches here.

Other Products Used
Urban Decay eye shadow brush (from the original Naked palette)
Maybelline Gel Liner in Black with MAC 266
TheBalm Bahama Mama with Sephora Double Ended Perfect Complexion blush
Chanel Glossimer in 121 Beige Guitarre
Marcelle Face Powder in Translucent with random fan brush

Realistically, this was possibly the most disorganized, spontaneous tutorial in the world. Optimistically, we'll say that it's got my signature procrastinating mark all over it.

Enjoy!  What are you guys up to this weekend?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

MUFE Aqua Cream vs Maybelline Colour Tattoo

I've been lusting after these products for SO long, but it's taken me forever to get around to getting both.  I picked up Make Up For Ever's Aqua Cream in #15 in December after a spontaneous Sephora trip.  It took me a long time to decide whether or not to get it, but after pretending for a few days that I might not get it, I just bit the bullet.

I was similarly coy with these Colour Tattoos -- I remember seeing them in Shopper's Drug Mart and being intrigued, but the tester was unimpressive.  I dismissed them until a few bloggers swatched them and Pomegranate Punk called my name.

Yesterday, I finally hauled myself to Wal-Mart to get it and I'm so glad I did!  I think this happens to be one of the better colours in the line; sometimes certain colours don't lend well to this solid/creamy texture.  Next trip I think I'll get are the orange one (Fierce and Tangy) and the taupe one (Tough as Taupe).

My only issue with getting Tough as Taupe is that I'm afraid it'll be really close to the MUFE Aqua Cream I have.  #15 falls somewhere between brown, silver and...taupe.  Don't judge me.

Instead of doing a full review, I figured I would settle the age-old debate: Drugstore vs. Department!

To even the playing ground, I do believe I've chosen the one of the best (if not the best) colours from each line -- we're going head to head here, folks.  I've also included a few close-up shots of Pomegranate Punk so you can see the different colour sparkles.