Friday, April 13, 2012

April Birchbox

 This month’s Birchbox came “on time” (they are usually supposed to arrive around the 10th and even 
though mine was shipped around the 4th, it came yesterday)

Yogini perfume
I was expecting this perfume to smell of something relaxing and centering. Maybe even cleansing? Eucalyptus? But this actually reminds me of the scents children’s perfumes have… you know, the ones that come in Snoopy bottles and Barbie heads.

Juice Beauty oil-free Moisturizer
I’ve yet to try the moisturizer but I appreciate the oil-free formula and I'm sure my skin will as well as it gets oilier as the weather gets hotter.
the back of the little bottle (.17 fl OZ) says “AHHHHHHH”

Zoya Spring Polish
This is in the shade Bevin and holds .25 fl OZ. Even though I’ve been meaning to try Zoya polishes, I’ve never actually seen any sold in stores (any of you know where I can find them?).
This is such a lovely gray jade color...  It reminds me of a Jade bracelet my aunt wears  on her wrist. The memory, I think, is what makes this color so comforting..
It’s also really great polish with an amazing opaque-in-two-coats formula that doesn’t pool around the edges or require finger clean-up.
Erno Laszlo Facial Soap
Madonna and Audrey Hepburn allegedly used this soap.

Yes to Blueberries Cleansing facial towelettes

I’m not a fan of makeup wipes
Even on nights when all I want to do is ditch my shoes and collapse into bed..
having a bathroom connected to my bedroom makes me feel like a lazy bum if I go to bed with a face full of makeup and a day’s toxins.

I’ve owned the Neutrogena ones that come in the blue packaging and wasn’t impressed but I’m willing to give these a go.


Fun Fact: the Yes to Carrots spf something Moisturizer was the first moisturizer I ever used. 
I saw a tidbit about it years ago somewhere inside a Seventeen magazine and then spotted it on the Beauty shelves at Target.
Repurchased this baby twice before I switched over to Clinique, then Vanishing Cream.

Makeup haul

 I did a little shopping..
My birthday is at the end of the month so I decided to treat myself to a couple goodies (and take advantage of Chic week and Ulta discounts)

 By the time I got to the MAC store in my area this was pretty much the only things left from the new collections.  The only thing I wanted that wasn't there was Superb (I didn't catch Estee Lauder's version) so I'll still be on the lookout for that. I think I have enough to keep me busy in the meantime.
- MSF Lightscapade
I cannot stress the beauty of this powder. I'll include a picture further down

- Blush in Modern Mandarin (Satin)

- Blush in Lovecloud (Satin but feels more on the matte side)

- Dynamic Duo 3 

- Lipstick in Freckletone (Lustre - not from new collections)
If you're having trouble pulling off the "nude lip" look, try a Lustre finish. They're on the sheer side so they'll let some of your natural lip color show through (so you're not completely washed out) and are more forgiving than mattes on dry spots.

 - Illamasqua Creme blush in Rude
I've never tried their creme blushes before but I adore their powder ones. And this color looked amazingly fresh swatched onto my hand.

- Revlon CustomEyes 020
The dark brown color is what I use on my brows daily. I haven't been able to find a replacement that matched the shade and texture so I'm repurchasing it.

- MUFE blush #18
I was assured by the makeup assistant that this shade is safe for use on the eyes.
Ever since Lisa Eldridge did her Biba makeup look I've been dreaming of experimenting with orange shadow.

 - Eylure Lashes by Katy Perry (I looked all over the package to find some sort of naming system... no luck. "Yellow box" is the best I can do.)
I had no idea Katy Perry was coming out with lashes! This was a pleasant surprise.
I'm not an expert with falsies but I've already tried (as in tried to wear) these once. The band (where the lash groups are attached) feels very flimsy. At first I thought this was a good thing; flexibility = ease of use?. I guess too much flexibility = disaster. It took me a little while (longer than it takes me to put on Ardell lashes) to get these on properly (the glue they come with is rubbish by the way). They were originally too long for my eyes and even after cutting off the excess the band kept lifting itself up in the inner corner.
I'll try these again when I get more patience.
You can find them at Ultas.

- Boscia blotting linens
The lavender ones are on sale at Ulta for $5!
I normally use the green tea ones ($10) but hey, let's try something new.

- NARS Sheer Matte foundation - Syracuse
After about a month of scraping this out of the generous Nordstrom's sample jar I gave in. Even though I have combo/oily skin I was a little weary of the "matte" label NARS gave this foundation. It's a bit misleading though.. Once you read into it you mind that it's more of a natural matte finish. It's not flat at all and it'll give you sheer/medium coverage .

ps. did you know you can now get foundation pumps at NARS??

-Philosophy Hope in a Tinted Moisturizer (medium to tan)
I had this last summer.
It's a tad too orange for me at the moment but it worked so well last year that I've decided to repurchase.

I had to include a close-up of this.
For some reason it reminds of Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel.
Take a moment to stare into its swirls. Allow yourself to get lost in it.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Birchbox "welcome box"

I finally got the invite to join Birchbox earlier this month. I rushed to confirm and, like a fool, signed up for 12 months.
Knowing me I would want to have the subscription for at least that long anyways so I figured I'd save $10. Plus you get 110 Birchbox points that you can later redeem for product. (again, I'm justifying impulse buys)
This is the "welcome box" for March...
...all I can say for now is that they're on their game with customer service. As for the products.. the Jouer moisture tint is smaller than my pinkie, the color club polish is a nice shade, haven't tried one love, the perfume smells toxic, the teas are delish, and oro fluido is highly impressive.
So this month Birchbox gets  a virtual high five from me.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

quick ASOS Haul

Did you know ASOS carries some Borjois? AND they have free shipping (no minimum. no code). This is my first experience ordering from and I gotta say it was fairly ok. I placed my order on the 14th and although marked it as "shipped" on the 15th, it wasn't actually in transit until the 21st. It arrived on the 24th. Soo slow processing time; normal ship time. I found funny that on the day it actually shipped, ASOS sent me a "your shipment is finally on its way" e-mail. Made me wonder if they knowingly lagged it on just my order. Have you ordered from ASOS? Let me know if you've gotten that e-mail..

Delice de Pudre has the most amazing scent I've smelled in a powder makeup product. Granted, not everyone has sentimental attachments to the smell of sunblock. It's advertised to be filled "with hints of sunshine" which translates to soft, golden micro-shimmers throughout the powder. It comes in two shades (I have #52) and has orange undertones.
This is lovely underneath peachy blushes as it adds subtle dimension to the color and more structure to the cheeks.
Because it can come across slightly orange on my skin (NC 40-42) I wouldn't double this as a contouring powder... Although it has that 'contouring blush' effect, it's not a natural shadow (as in 'the absence of light') shade and doesn't work well for fake-slimming.

I got another tin of Steam Cream. This is the best hand lotion, in my opinion, to keep at hand. It hydrates well, the scent doesn't last long and is fairly neutral (a plus if you have a nice perfume you'd like to wear without a distracting scent on your hands), and it sinks into the skin right away. Must be the steam.

Lastly, Figs & Rougue Sweet Geranium 100% organic lip balm. Woah that was a mouthful. SoCal was having pretty warm weather the day this package arrived and I think it has somewhat affected the texture of this balm (it was really really soft -like melted butter- and gritty). I'm letting it sit and settle for a couple of days before I try it.  I've never tried anything from this brand, or anything Geranium scented so this was pretty much an impulse buy... It was around $5 and looked bigger online (<-- that's me trying to justify this).
I have a weakness for lip balms in cute packaging.

Friday, March 23, 2012

march favorites

 It's not nearly the end of March but I figured I'd do these while things are still fresh in my mind

 MAC Face & Body
Key with this is to really work it into the skin. The more you buff it in, the thicker it becomes and the more coverage it gives you (and the less it sinks into your pores). It's still not full coverage, and doesn't cover redness but it has been lovely for everyday.
MAC Brow pencil - Spiked
Retractable pencils are my brow's best friend. This color is dark enough to match my black brows but light enough to not make me into a bushman.


Bobbi Brown Nude Pink
This has been on my cheeks almost every day since it launched in the Neons & Nudes collection. Lovely shade of pink with enough warmness in it to still look natural (NC 40). It's also matte!
I got MAC's Peaches blush for those days I wanted to be peachy. It's a sheertone so it doesn't make me look like an oompa loompa with my heavy hand AND it gives Nude Pink depth when used underneath it. I'm loving this combo.
Neutrogena Revitalizing Lip Balm 50
Got this in a pinch when I forgot my lip balm. It's hydrating and sheer enough to be used on its own without looking like much. Revlon's Creme Brulee looks odd on me; this is a better shade for my skin tone.

I went to Ulta for the first time ever last month (none near me) and found 10 Naked 2s sitting on the shelf. Evidently I snatched one..
I've always had an issue highlighting the inner corner of my eyes. Everything is too shimmery, or too pale, too sallow or too pink. Bootycall is  slightly peachy with golden undertones and doesn't look at all frosty. It's perfection as far as I know.
Mac Cleanse-off oil
When you think of riding motorcycles, think of waterproof makeup. If not, you'll take off your helmet and reveal a patchy raccoon mess.
This oil removes the last tidbits of waterproof mascara without having to rub your eyes off.
Herb Pharm Nervous System Tonic
Cliched as it may be, beauty comes from within. When I'm stressed, I break out and stress some more. It's a vicious cycle.
A few drops of this in some OJ and it's smoooooth sailing. (I go to Follow Your Heart for all my health concerns)
Voice Recorder
This is the Sony Perfection (should be the actual name). Have you ever had a class right after a long study session? (I can't concentrate at all on what the professor is saying) If so, you NEED this in your life/backpack. I sit this on my desk, press record, and rest assured that this little guy will catch every single word my professor says on  everything. I don't have to worry about rushing to write down notes, I don't worry about making sense of my notes three weeks later during Finals.. I honestly don't know why everyone isn't doing this. Best $30 I've spent this month.
Bobby pins?
OK, not all bobby pins, these pins in particular. I can put all my hair up in a bun using 4 of these. Then I can take them off gently without tugging or breaking my hair. 

QOTP: What's the best money you've spent this month?

Sunday, March 18, 2012 GWP

Hello everyone,
I was just watching Lisa Eldridge talk about her lipstick palettes (HERE is the link to the video) and instantly fell in love with the look of Japonesque palettes. (and all the colors she's put in them)
On my hunt for them, I came across

Now, I don't know if this is a known website, or if I'm the last person in the world to find out about it.. But my goodness have they got a great deal going on at the moment.

$130 worth of useful stuff free with a $100 purchase. Yes, $100. 
I know, I know that's a big purchase. This website carries NARS, Japonesque, Beauty Blender, Tarte, Stila... so if you're someone like me you won't have a hard time dropping a Benjamin here. (yepp, I went there)

They also carry skincare (Origins, Boscia..) and hair care/tools (Hot Tools, Mason Pearson). For the purpose of not sounding like an infomercial any longer I'll stop describing the awesomeness of this site now.

My general rule with GWP is to not make a purchase just to receive the gift. 
But that's just me. I'm the nutty person who has special shopping lists for such an occasion.

So check out the site. If you've been eyeing that NARS Spring collection, or have been wanting to get your hands on a Beauty Blender,  now may be a good time to dive in and get yourself some free goodies to match.

QOTP: Let me know what your rules are with GWP if any.. Did u take advantage of this one? What did you get??