Saturday, December 31, 2011

Boscia Revitalizing Black Hydration Gel

When almost all of my skincare products ran out last November, I had a series of huge Sephora orders and purchases.  One of the items that I ordered from their website was the brand new face cream from Bosica, the Revitalizing Black Hydration Gel.  I believe that Kose was the first skincare line to use black tints in their products and about a year ago, I saw that Boscia was following suit.  The original black mask from Boscia must have done very weel for the company since over the past few months, a whole facial line of black products have emerged, with the face gel being the latest one.

I should have bought this product in the summer, I wanted to it so bad when it came out and then when I bought it, I realized that I wasn't thinking and that I bought a face gel for the winter (not the greatest idea for my skin).  I used it a few times in early November and really liked it but by the beginning of December, my skin was too dry for it to provide full hydration.  Needless to say, I have put this product aside for the moment and plan to start using it again in May. 

Sephora gives a full product description of the product.  "A cooling moisturizer with an ultra-light gel texture.  This hydrating gel refines skin texture and brightens and clarifies the complexion while minimizing the look of pores, both instantly and over time.  This gel contains a range of powerful ingredients.  Artichoke leaf extract improves elasticity to help tighten pore walls.  Charcoal absorbs excess oil and impurities as it detoxifies.  Glycolic acid helps clarify skin and smooth rough texture.  Vitamin C helps brighten skintone and minimize fine lines as it defends from free radical damage." 

This product is housed in what is now my favorite type of container.  I first ran into this type of container when I used Kate Somerville face products and I am glad that other companies are beginning to adopt this type of packaging.  Instead of dipping my fingers into the jar, there is a top on the jar that is pushed down and automatcially dispenses the perfect amount of product to use all over my fave.  This is great for products that contain Vitamin C or any other type of natural or organic ingredient since it helps to keep the formula stable and will allow it to last longer.  When products with this type of formulation are exposed to the air, they begin to degrade and breakdown very quickly, rendering the product useless after several months time.  I hope this is where the packaging industry is going to go over the next few years...

The product itself is a lightweight gel with a black tint and a bit of gold shimmer in the formula.  The formula absorbed quickly and easily into my skin, with no residue left at the end.  It leaves a bit of a tingling feeling after application and this didn't bother me the first few times that I used it but began to as my skin got drier and drier as the weather changes.  It left my skin soft and smooth, no complaints there but this formula just isn't enough in the winter months.  It helped to brighten and clarify my skin, applying this over Clarin Vital Light Serum enhanced that formula and really lit up my skin. 

This gel is best for warmer weather months for me, I am just putting it to the side at the moment since I need a stronger face cream.  I could see this product working very well year round for someone with normal or oily skin and I would recommend to anyone with one of these types of skin.

photo courtesy of Boscia

Friday, December 30, 2011

MAC Daphne Guinness for MAC

The last of the new MAC collection is the largest and the only full color collection.  This collection is a collaboration of MAC and Daphne Guinness.  MAC has released a large amount of collaboration collections this year and many of them have been among their best collections of the year so I have high hopes for this collaboration!  Daphne Guinness is a big name in the fashion world, a British journalist and collector of haute couture who has an impeccable sense of style.  In addition, she was named to the International Best Dressed list in 1994 and continues to be a major player in the fashion world.  This will be a great color collection and I already am putting some of the items on my Most Wanted list!

"A first glimpse into the winter colour palette imagined and created by Daphne Guinness.  An artist and collector of haute couture, Daphne is her art...this collaboration with MAC is "a window into my imagination".  Limited edition."  The shades in this collection are deep and cool toned and I fully plan to pick some of these up when I can get up to the counter!
The MAC and Daphne Guinness collaboration...

Eye Shadow x 4: Interior Life - Dark, moody, painterly, this limited edition Eye Shadow compact melds Daphne Guinness' choice of muted pink and dusky lavender with charcoal and mid-tone gray, creating a rich, smoky look.
- Stratus - light pink (Matte)
- Interior Life - dark lavender-y gray (Satin)
- Bruised Sky - mid-tone gray blue (Veluxe Pearl)
- Heather Belles - dark charcoal/carbon (Satin)

Pigment - Pigment is a highly concentrated loose colour powder that contains ingredients to help it adhere to the skin.  Create a subtle wash of colour or an intense effect.  Does not streak or cake.  Easy to blend and long-lasting.
- Aurora - pinked taupe
- Circa Plum - frosty dirty mid-tone lavender
- Nebula - dark grayed brown with pearl

Eye Brows - Self-propelling, self-sharpening, brow defining.  Confidently adds what you need: shape, colour, density in one streamlined tool.  Like a pen, creates its own just-right point.  Provides definition, shapes, deepens/fills in color.  Creates striking arches.  Easy to tote around.  No sharpener needed.
- Fling - light taupe ash blonde
- Stud - deep rich blackened brown

Powerpoint Eye Pencil - Waterproof.  Longwearing.  Metallic, shimmer, and matte finishes.  Smooth to apply.  Won't transfer, smudge, or budge...  Draws the line, powers your eyes.  Makes it point.  Lasts.
- Gray Utility - uniform gray
- Engraved - rich black

Pro Longwear Lipcreme - Lightweight texture, creamy finish, and comfortable longwear combine in this has-it-all pro-class lip colour.  Slick in use, applies without the need of top coat, and still lasts up to 12 hours.  Won't feather or transfer, and the colour stays true.  Helps lips stay soft and hydrated.
- Warp Speed - light silver
- Red Dwarf - blue pink
- Seasoned Plum - mid-tone lavender
- Approaching Storm - deep rose

Cremesheen Gloss - A lip finish that fuses the creamy, sheen-filled nature of Cremesheen Lipstick with the shine of MAC Lipglass.  Soft, comfortable, non-sticky.  Applies with a doe-foot applicator.  Use as a top layer to its namesake Lipstick or on its own.
- Borealis - pale gray pink with iridescent pearl
- Japanese Spring - pale dirty pink
- Narcissus - dirty eggplant
- Richly Revered - deep plum brown

Blush Ombre - A powder blush featuring a shade wave of gentle ombre hues.  Ultra-fine formula provides the cheeks with flawless, medium-buildable coverage and lightly pearled, natural-looking radiance.  Limited edition.
- Azalea Blossom - light cool pink
- Vintage Grape - mid-tone violet pink

Nail Lacquer - Revolutionary new high gloss formula.  Three long-wearing finishes - Cream, Sheer, and Frosted.  Visibly different.  Provides no-streak,no-chip finish.  Contains conditioners and UV protection.  Go hi-lacquer!
- Hyperion - light gray blue green
- Endless Night - pale gray pink with iridescent pearl
- Blueblood - deep eggplant

My favorite pieces are the Blush Ombre in Azalea Blossom, this is the perfect cool pink for my skintone.  The blush compact contain two shades so I can make it deeper or brighter based on the look that I am going for that day.  My second favorite piece is the Lipcreme in Approaching Storm, the deep dark rose shade.  This will be great for a dramatic lip look while my skin is pale this winter. 

I love the nail polish shades in this collection, especially Blueblood.  However none of the shades are very unique and I could find dupes of them in the OPI or China Glaze line if these sell out before I get a chance to buy them.  I could go either way on the eye shadow, I would use three of the four shades but I'm not overwhelmed by the palette.  I bet that I could skip over it unless it looks amazing in person.  The last piece of this collection that I really like are the Red Dwarf and Seasoned Plum lipsticks.

This might be one of the best collections of the year from MAC!

photo courtesy of MAC

Thursday, December 29, 2011

MAC Metal-X

The second of the new MAC collections is the one that is designed for the eyes.  Metal-X is a cream eye shadow formula that was originally released as a limited edition product back in 2007 and now is again being released as a limited edition collection in the end of 2011.  I know that this product has tons of fans so I am wondering if MAC is considering releasing this in their permanent or pro line.  Based on the description on their website and the swatches that Temptalia has posted, this product formula looks as though it is very close to Illamasqua's Liquid Metal.  This means that it will be a full pigment eye shadow but will be much more high maintence in application than a traditional cream formula.

"After a stunning 2007 debut, the molten magic and liquid metal of  Metal-X Cream Shadow is back, better than ever!  Gilt-loaded, platinum-popped - 9 shades in all.  Metal heads look forward to the return of extreme multi-dimension and shine!"  The words 'liquid metal' are even in the product description so I imagine that this product is very close, if not exactly like, the Illamasqua formula!

Metal-X Cream Shadow - A cream to powder metallicshadow that provides liquid metal effects.  Goes on smoothly, blends like a charm.  An extremely luxurious highlight/finish for eyes, cheeks, and skin.
- Cyber - metallic silver with silver pearl
- Virgin Silver - white with silver pearl
- Fusion Gold - light pinky beige with gold pearl
- Palladium - metallic ash
- Rusty - dirty peach gold
- Red Hot Copper - warm copper
- Venetian Tarnish - golden tarnished bronze
- Vintage Coin - metallic olive green
- Gold Carbon - metallic taupe

I read all about these shadows on the Temptalia blog, I haven't gotten up to the counter yet.  She states that the formula is more high maintence than a traditional cream shadow, a fact that didn't surprise me based on the description from the company.  If you want a cream shadow that is easy to apply and can be applied and blended quickly with fingers, then the MAC Paint Pots would be the best bet for you.  This formula is more pigmented and would better if you want a highly pigmented finish and a more dramatic eye look.

My favorite shade is the pink gold shade, the Fusion Gold.  Gold Carbon is very pretty also, I would it as a shadow or a liner which is also the same way that I would use Vintage Coin and Venetian Tarnish.  Overall, the golds are my favorites in this formula.  Cyber is also a great shade and I would use it for a dramatic silver gilded eye look.

Now onto the MAC and Daphne Guinness collection!

photo courtesy of MAC

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

MAC Tour de Fabulous

Here commences the huge MAC after-Christmas releases!  On December 26th, three brand new collections were released, the first group of new releases from MAC since before Thanksgiving.  I was much looking forward to these new releases because after looking at the holiday collections and the awesome collaboration with Gareth Pugh, there was little to no reason for me to even visit their website.  One of the collections is a full color collection and the other two are smaller and more focused, one toward lip products and the other toward eye makeup. 

We are going to start with the two smaller collections and then finish up with the large color collection that was made with Daphne Guinness.  Tour de Faboulous is the lip product collection and it features a range of new Lipglass shades and matching Lip Pencils.  "Lips speak louder than words.  Eleven intense new shades of Lipglass with eight coordinating Lip Pencils.  A Tour de Fabulous!  Limited edition."

The new lip collection...

Lipglass - A unique lip gloss available in a wide variety of colours that can create a high gloss, glass-like finish or a subtle sheen.  Designed to be worn on its own, over Lip Pencil or Lipstick, Tinted Lipglass is the perfect product for crating shine that lasts.  It's pigmented, very shiny, and can impart subtle or dramatic colour.  It contains Jojoba Oil to help soften and condition the lips.  Tinted Lipglass is packaged in a convenient bottle with a sponge tip applicator that provides a quick, smooth, even application.
- Casual Air - frosted pale pink
- Check This out - coral with 'transforming' yellow-pink pearl
- It's a Wow - midtone blue pink ('rose pink')
- Rich and Witty - neutral dirty pinked beige
- Comfort and Joy - midtone frosted dirty mauve
- Famously Fab! - purple-lavender, slightly pearled
- Tour de Fabulous - clean/bright yellow pink with pearl
- StylePacked - bright, vivid fuchsia
- Knockout - red with pearl
- Rich Bounty - deep red-brown with pearl
- Real Posh - deep berry, slightly pearled

Lip Pencil - A pencil designed for shaping, lining, or filling in the lip.  Lip Pencils have a smooth, creamy texture that is perfect for lining the lips or filling them in.  They are long-lasting and available in a wide selection of colours that work well with many different lipstick shades.
- What Comes Naturally - pale peachy beige
- Hip 'n' Happy - dirty blue pink
- Have to Have It - soft warm beige
- Just Wonderful - dirty mauve
- Entertain Me - clearly orange
- Lasting Sensation - bright coral
- Embrace Me - vivid pinkish fuchsia
- Just My Type - intense warm brown

I love some of these new Lipglass hues and I think that I will need to go the counter and treat myself since I haven't bought lip gloss in almost two months.  My favorite shade is the one that I have pictured, it is It's a Wow.  I love this cool, clean shade of rose and I can see myself getting a huge amount of wear from it all year round.  Since spring is coming upon us next, I would like to buy Casual Air and Tour de Fabulous to start my pink lip gloss arsenal for that season.  Last but not least, Rich and Witty is another good pink neutral shade that I will be able to wear with many different eye looks.

Now onto the eye makeup collection of the releases!

photo courtesy of MAC

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Urban Decay Naked vs. Naked 2 Palettes

My last post was all the details that you will be needing about the Urban Decay Naked 2 palette, I love mine and I really recommend that you guys all go out and buy it when it finally becomes available.  But one of the big questions with the new version of the palette is this: "If I already own the original Naked palette do I really need the new version of the palette."  I would initially agree that you need both palettes but we will look at them a big deeper and see who might want both and who might be able to get away with only buying one of them. 

Both palettes contain 12 shades of eye shadow, some of which are unique to each palette and some of which are in the traditional Urban Decay shadow range.  Both palettes allow the user to create a range of eye looks, from a light neutral to a deep smoky look.  It appears that Urban Decay was very careful when they created both palettes in that they made sure that all the shades could work together and give the user maximum benefits from their purchase.  That being said, are the shades in the palettes all that different and do really they create looks that are very different.  My honest answer is that many of the shades are not very unique and the looks created by each palette will not be very different.  That being said, the original palette contains warmer shades than the new one, which focuses on cool tones and the popular taupe and greige hues that we have been seeing all throughout the fall and winter seasons. 

As a refresh, I have included a picture of the original palette and we will quickly look at each palette in both palettes.  I am not going to discuss the brushes that are included in these palettes or the primer and lip gloss that come with, all of these products could be purchased on their own and don't really affect the palette itself.

The original palette offers the following shades...

- Virgin - nude satin
- Sin - champagne shimmer
- Naked - buff matte
- Sidecar - beige sparkle
- Buck - brown matte
- Half Baked - bronze gold shimmer
- Smog - golden brown shimmer
- Darkhorse - bronze-plum shimmer
- Toasted - taupe-bronze
- Hustle - mocha shimmer
- Creep - near black metallic
- Gunmetal - dark gray metallic

And the shades in the Naked 2 palette...

- Foxy - cream bisque with matte finish
- Half Baked - golden bronze with shimmery finish
- Booty Call - shimmery cork
- Chopper - copper shimmer with silver micro-glitter
- Tease - creamy pale brown with matte finish
- Snakebite - dark bronze shimmer with metallic base
- Suspect - pale golden beige with shimmery finish
- Pistol - light gray brown with shimmery finish
- Verve - oyster with shimmery finish
- YDK - cool bronze shimmer with metallic base
- Busted - deep brown with shimmery finish
- Blackout - blackest black with matte finish

I am impressed that the only repeat is Half Baked, it appears that Urban Decay has been listening to their fans complain that so many of the shadows are repeated from palette to palette and they are getting a massive collection of the same shades (I have Smog in three different palettes as this point and I don't need the shade three times!).  I respect Urban Decay for creating two palettes that are similar yet aren't copies of each other and both of which provide a great shade range for their fans.

The shades in the two palettes that are the most similar are the highlighters down at the left end of the palette, none of them are exact dupes for each other but none of them are all the different.  Both of the palettes contain pale matte shades which are the hardest of the shades to work with and my least favorites.  The deeper shades at the right end of the palette are where we really see the differences between the palettes and are the major reasons why you would want to purchase both of the palettes.  There are absolutely no dupes in the dark shades, Darkhorse is completely unique from the original palette (this one has very few dupes overall in the Urban Decay shadow line).  From Naked 2, Snakebite, Pistol, and Blackout have no dupes at all.

Do you need both?  I think that the answer is in the affirmative!  If you are an Urban Decay fan, you will end up buying both.  If you have blue eyes and use these types of shades all the time then you will want both palettes.  If you have brown or hazel eyes and prefer to use shadows with more color then you could get away with only owning one of them, likewise if you don't do a neutral eye look all that often then of course you will not need both palettes.  I love both of the palettes and really recommend that you purchase both as they are both beautiful and different in many ways.

photo courtesy of Sephora

Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette

The original Urban Decay Naked Palette is a staple in my traincase, it has been a favorite of mine since I first bought it in the late summer of 2010 and I still reach for it more than any other eye palette that I own.  This month, Urban Decay released a follow-up to this best selling palette of neutrals and bronzes and I first posted a picture of it when I saw hints of it on Facebook.  I was lucky enough to be on my computer when the official email came, stating that it was available for purchase in very limited quantities.  I ordered the product so fast that I never even looked at and hoped that I would love it the way that I loved the original.  Within an hour, the Urban Decay website was completely crashed and the palette was soon sold out and every restock every since has been sold out.  I was very lucky to get mine when I did and now I am glad that the semester is over and I have time to really play with the shades in it.

So far this product is only available on the Urban Decay website, I have heard rumors of a late winter release to Sephora and to other retailers that carry this beauty product line.  It is still sold out but at least it is listed on the website, an improvement from the first sell out.  I'[m sure that there are a lot of ladies that are looking at this on the company website and beginning to decide how they want to spent their spring beauty budget...

"The most anticipated sequel of the decade!  Our new palette is meticulously packed with 12 Taupe + Greige neutrals, featuring five exclusive new shades.  Naked 2 has 12 pigment-rich taupe + greige neutral eye shadows, including five new shades.  Our palette proves once again, neutral is anything but boring (and is downright sexy when worn Naked).  Feast your eyes on our shades ranging from pale to deep, matte to sparkly.  This collection lets you achieve lots of neutral looks, smoky dramatic eyes, and everything in between.  Let's just say there's a whole new way to get Naked!  The case has an art-school inspired look with hinged lid - taupe metal with embossed chocolate brown artwork.  It's smooth, modern, and cool to the touch - a real tactile experience.  Plus, our palette also features a travel-sized Lip Junkie Lip Gloss in Naked, AND a double-sided, cruelty-free Good Karma Shadow/Crease Brush (available only in this palette).  Any self-respecting makeup lover will love to have both palettes to get their complete neutral fix!"

This palette contains five shades that are brand new and only found in this palette; the rest of the shades are from their normal eye shadow line (some of which were also in the original Naked palette).  The shade list...

- Foxy - cream bisque with matte finish
- Half Baked - golden bronze with shimmer finish
- Booty Call - cork with shimmer finish (exclusive to this palette)
- Chopper - shimmering copper with silver micro-glitter
- Tease - creamy pale brown with matte finish
- Snakebite - dark shimmering bronze with a metallic base
- Suspect - pale gold beige with shimmer finish (exclusive to this palette)
- Pistol - light brown/gray with shimmer finish (exclusive to this palette)
- Verve - oyster with shimmer finish
- YDK - cool bronze shimmer with metallic finish
- Busted - deep brown with shimmer finish (exclusive to this palette)
- Blackout - blackest black with matte finish (exclusive to this palette)

This palette contains several standout shades and one major letdown.  The standouts are the shimmer and metallic finishes; the best are Half Baked, Booty Call, Verve, Suspect, and Snakebite.  I am not going to talk at length about Half Baked, this has been a favorite of mine for years and I have covered it many times before.  Booty Call is a great highlighting shade, it is pretty champagne with enough pigment for a highlighter.  Verve is the shade in the palette that has the most gray in it, it is a true greige.  It is very pigmented, easy to work with, and looks great with all the neutrals in the palette.  Suspect is not very unique but is another shade that works well as a highlighter and blends well with every shade in the palette.  Snakebite might be my favorite shade in the palette, it a dark bronze with gold shimmer.  I use it right on the lid or as a liner.  Very pigmented and buttery soft when applied, this is among the best of the Urban Decay Eye Shadows.  The major let down is the Tease shade, I don't like mattes to begin with and this shadow embodies all the reasons why.  It applies hard and the texture is really lacking, it is very dry and hard to blend.  I tried it as a highlighter and it took longer to get on than any other shade in the palette.  It looked dirty when applied with the NARS 3 Brush and I had to start blending it with my fingers to soften it, my least favorite of the palette.

This palette also contains a small lip gloss and a dual-ended brush.  One side of the brush is a crease brush, the other side is a stiff shadow brush.  The crease side made me the happiest, I was actually looking to buy a crease brush with a stiffer bristle than my MAC 224 Brush so that was an unexpected treat when I opened the container (I ordered this palette so fast that I never even took notice of the brushes in it!), the shadow side is just like any other stiff shadow brush.  It applies nicely but I prefer to use my MAC shadow brushes, they are larger and can get more shadow on my lid much quicker. 

The lip gloss included with this palette is a small version of their Lip Junkie product, a gloss that I haven't tried yet.  The gloss was another surprise since I never looked at what shade it was when I was ordering it.  "Get hooked on shine, without the sticky hangover.  Lip Junkie features a soft, luxe texture, stay-put shades, and tastes like wedding mints.  Addicted yet?  You want a super-shiny lip gloss, but can't stand the sticky texture, right?  Wait til you feel the soft, cushiony texture of this gloss!  Lip Junkie stays put longer than other glosses, but never feels gummy or gooey.  It comes in a range of pretty amazing shades (if we do say so ourselves), and the color payout is amazing.  Take your pick from sheer to pretty neutrals, kick-ass brights, or glimmering near-black.  And the flavor?  Think yummy wedding mints...a sweet mint with a little zing that makes breath feel fresh."  Naked is the shade that is contained in this palette, it is a permanent shade and the name makes it a great addition.  It is a pinky neutral, very my-lips-but-better.  The flavor is great, I love mint glosses and this one has a bit of kick to it.  I want to try more of these glosses!

In conclusion, if neutrals are your thing than you will love this palette.  If you are an Urban Decay fan, than you will love this palette.  These shades are very wearable and you will get lots of use from them and the palette is worth ordering and waiting for.  But is it better than the original Naked and do you need one or both?  That will be covered in my next post...

photo courtesy of Urban Decay

Monday, December 26, 2011

Vincent Longo Water Canvas Blush

Vincent Longo is a line of products that I used to use all time about five years.  However in that time, it has been pulled out of the Sephora stores and Bath and Body Works has stopped carrying makeup in their larger stores so I now have to find this line online and therefore I have bought much less of it in the past few years.  One of my favorite products in the line was always the Water Canvas Blush and this is one of the only products that I still continue to use from the line, I have been using this blush since before I started this blog.  It was always a staple in my train case yet I kept forgetting to write about it for some reason, this blush is fantaastic and is the reason that I started using cream blush (and haven't looked back ever since!).

Pretty much the only way that I can get this product line is to order it from the company's website so that is also where I am getting all of my product information for this post.  "Based on the patented technology of our legendary Water Canvas Foundation, Water Canvas Blush is a moist, refreshing formula, so light and natural looking, it perfectly mimics the flush and glow of healthy skin.  Contains 75% Microwater, and unique 100% natural botanical seaweed polymer, along with Vitamin E, and silica.  Moisturizes and protects the skin.  Easy to apply and very long lasting.  Two shades may be used to sculpt cheekbones for the most dramatic, yet utterly natural finish."

This product is the most concentrated cream blush that I have ever used.  Ever...  I am still using the same jar that I purchased over five years ago, I only need a very little bit of this product for my cheeks.  Due to the Microwater in the product, care must be put into closing and opening this product.  The jar is airtight so the product isn't aging at the same rate that other products do.  This product must be kept airtight, it will quickly dry out if it is closed wrong and the whole product can be lost in a matter of hours, the case contains a mechanism that produces a clicking noise when it is closed correctly. 

The Microwater in this product is exclusive to the Vincent Longo Water Canvas line, I don't know how long the company has this patent for so I don't know when we will be seeing other companies using this type of technology.  This technology actually makes the product feel cold when applying it, an odd feeling in a cheek color product.  This blush produces the most natural flush on my cheeks and I get many compliments on how great I look when I have it on.  Compliments on my overall look and skin, not on my makeup shades. 

This product can be applied with either clean fingers or with a sponge.  Vincent Longo provides a variety of application details on their website.  "For a clean, natural look, apply Water Canvas Blush onto the apples of the cheeks with your fingers.  For a more professional look, blend color more intensely along the cheekbones with Vincent Longo #37 Foundation Brush or Vincent Longo Wedge Sponge."  I have found that this product is best used with clean fingers, over bare skin or a liquid foundation.  I didn't like the way that this product blended over a powder foundation (which I rarely use anyway).  The #37 Foundation Brush gives this product a very dramatic, sculpted look which I don't really like.  I have used it with the #26 Highlighter Brush, this tools provides more pigmentation than using it with my fingers but still looks more natural than using it with the sponge or the stiffer brushes. 

This product is available in the following shades...

- Aqua Crimson - peachy pink
- Aura Passion - medium neutral
- Lucky Light - light peach
- Mermaid Muse - deep warm peach
- Clover Mist - deep warm pink
- Forever Flush - medium warm peach
- Morning Tender - bright rose pink
- Nature Ray - light neutral
- Savannah Fresh - medium warm pink
- Swan Lake - medium cool rose
- Terra Dew - bright warm red
- Tuscan Spell - deep brick red

The only shade that I have from this product is Swan Lake, the cool medium rose.  These blushes are very pigmented so many of them would look awful against my pale skin.  Any of the warm peaches looked very unnatural and the deeper neutrals and reds were just too much for me.  I wish that this product contained a few more shades for cool skin since I love this formula.  I would love to buy this product in more pink shades, I feel that the shade range is too skewed to warm and deep shades.  In addition to wishing that there were more shades in this range, I am also wary of ordering these online since they are so pigmented and can look very different in person.

photo courtesy of Vincent Longo

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Spring 2012 Beauty Trend Report

Merry Christmas everyone!  I hope that everyone is enjoying their holiday, I am working hard to get some blogging done and to get a few extra entries saved before the spring semester begins.  Winter may just have arrived last week however the spring collections are beginning to be seen on a few cosmetics' companies websites, I think that Too Faced posted their's on the first the day of winter itself.  Within the next month, the collections will come out faster than I can keep up (especially after the semester begins) so we are going to begin early by looking at some of the top trends that we should expect to see throughout spring.  At the beginning of every spring and fall season, Allure has an article with the top trends from the runways and I have seen that these lists are completely on point so I am going to continue to get my information from this source. 

Overall spring looks like it is going to be lots of fun and contains some trends that will be easy for me to work with.  I am anticipating that the late winter release to Sephora of Urban Decay's Naked 2 palette will be huge and that this product will be contained in the company's spring 2012 makeup collection.  I am glad that I am not seeing pictures of the brightly colored shadows that were all over the runways the past few years since they could get overdone very easily, I am seeing more of a shift to neutral eye shadow colors and more vibrant lips, trends that I can easily work with. 

Courtesy of Allure magazine...the top trends of spring 2012!

Red Lips - Makeup artists took red in totally unexpected directions.  Charlotte Tilbury chose a deep chocolate-red at Donna Karan, while Pat McGrath went for a glossy cherry at Balenciaga and a metallic crimson at Yves Saint Laurent.  She described the latter and "young and slighty eccentric".  Trick of the trade - To avoid any hard lines, skip lip pencil and clean up the edges of your mouth with a finger, as McGrath did at Dior.  "It's a fresher way to wear red.", she said.
Messy Updos - With updos, neatness was not a virtue.  "The more disheveled the hair, the nicer it looks.", Guido said of the wispy crown of braids at Valentino.  French twists were soft and loose at Louis Vuitton and Dolce & Gabbana, while the bouffants at Fendi were "destroyed a bit" by hairstylist Sam McKnight right before models right the runway.  Trick of the trade - For a roughed-up twist like those at Louis Vuitton, spritz a texturizing spray on dry hair for matte finish.  After securing the twist with pins, pull out a few pieces from the top and bottom, "so it's a little bit punk-y.", Guido said.
Earth-Toned Shadows - In shades of taupe, khaki, and copper, there was nothing overly dramatic about spring's smoky eyes - but smudged all over the lids and under the eyes, these tones were subtly sexy.  At Haider Ackermann, clear gloss topped the copper shadow, which "made the look even more seductive.", said makeup artist Stephane Marais.  Trick of the trade - Soften the edges of the shadow with a domed brush.  "It should look like a watercolor.", said makeup artist Lucia Pieroni, who employed the technique at Missoni.

Tough Hair - Grungy, wet-looking hair - achieved with loads of mousse or a combination of sprays - "has an edge and coolness", said Guido, who created the looks at Prada, Lanvin, and Alberta Ferretti.  At Giambattista Valli, hairstylist Orlando Pita left the bottom half of the hair dry and fuzzy for the same kind of grunge-meets-glamour effect.  Trick of the trade - Start with dry hair.  curl your hair from the ears down, then rake mousse from roots to tips until your head is saturated.  But skip hair spray: it makes the hair too crispy.

Flushed Cheeks - Two was better than one for the sweet cheeks at many shows this season.  Makeup artists dusted a combination of peach and pink blushes on the apples and along the cheekbones.  "It gives a really gorgeous hue without looking too heavy.", said makeup artist Diane Kendal who used the trick at Alberta Ferretti and Proenza Schouler.  Trick of the trade - When wearing two shades of blush, don't layer one on top of the other on your face - the colors won't blend sufficently.  Instead, swirl your brush in both blushes before applying.

Ponytails - All manner of ponytails came swinging down the spring runways.  Some were curled and romantic (Nina Ricci), while others were slicked back and architectural (Herve Leger and Marchesa), and at Balmain, they looked as if they had traveled straight out of The Official Preppy Handbook.  Trick of the trade - Spritiz a saly spray on your ponytail for a messy vibe - Guido's last step at Reed Krakoff - or curl the ends for a polished look, like he did at Nina Ricci.

Crazy Hair Color - Hairstylists went wild with temporary color.  At Gucci, Luigi Murenu brushed on streaks of black and gold; Eugene Souleiman added rose gold extensions at Peter Som.  At Thakoon, Odile Gilbert coated the updos with colored chalk that's used in Europe for indigestion.  Trick of the trade - For real life, colorist Aura Friedman, who dyed the extensions for Peter Som suggests getting a couple of one-inch streaks under the top layers of hair on either side of your part.  Rose gold is pretty on blondes, and pale coral or mauve works for brunettes.

Black Eyes - Black on the eyes sounds basic, but when the rest of the face is bare, it becomes dramatic.  Thinly lining the top lashes at Jil Sander added definition to an otherwise minimal face.  A line on the inner rims at Prada looked tough with concealer-covered lips.  And at Gucci, McGrath used black shadow and glitter for a "graphic, rebellious effect".  Trick of the trade - For a charp, clean line, as at Jil Sander, choose a retractable pencil, as makeup artist Peter Philips did.  "It makes it so easy because it's just like a pen".

I am torn with what my favorite of the new trends will be, I love both red lips and the earthy eye shadow shades.  I can't wait to wear Naked 2 all spring and I am hoping that I find a few more great earth toned shadows this spring.  The colorful hair trend intrigues me but I don't know that I can bring it into the real world, I doubt that I will be taken seriously if I have a few streaks of mauve in my hair even if I can hide it well.  Perhaps I will try this trend with clip-on streaks of color and see how it goes one night when I am going out.  The Tough hair trend is not me but I will try the Messy Updo trend, normally I prefer my updos tight and polished but I will try it out and see what happens.  And the Flushed Cheeks trend?   Just the reason that I needed to order even more blushes!

The picture included with this post is from the spring 2012 collection from Louis Vuitton.

photo courtesy of

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Creative Nail Design Solar Oil

I use hand cream every single day, often more than once a day.  However this time of the year, not even the best hand cream can help my hands and especially my cuticles.  I complained about my cuticles for the past few weeks until my friend gave me a small bottle of cuticle oil that her stylist had given her to try out.  Apparently she felt that I needed it a bit more than she did...

What she gave me was a bottle of Creative Nail Design's Solar Oil, one of the product most often used in manicures and a star on the Makeup Alley Nail Board.  "A synergistic blend of naturally light oils and Vitamin E, designed to deeply penetrate and protect skin and nails.  Jojoba Oil carries Vitamin E deeply into the skin to help reduce visible signs of aging.  Naturally light oils keep skin soft and supple.  Keeps natural nails, nail color, and nail enhancements tough and flexible.  Repeated use drives oils deeper into the natural nail.  Super-penetrating formula conditions skin and nails."

The most positive part of this product is that it works exactly as designed, when rubbed on the cuticles at least once or twice, it helps to soften them and greatly improves the appearance of dry, ragged cuticles.  I use this on bare, cleaned cuticles and then layer my regular hand cream on top, I don't recommend using them in the opposite order since the oil wouldn't be able to pentrate through the hand cream barrier.  It smells very pleasant, the Sweet Almond Oil in it is responsible for the fragrance of the product. 

This product is formulated with Vitamin E and Sweet Almond Oil, both of which are very effective.  But considering that they are the two major ingredients, this isn't a very unique formula and the same type of effect could be achieved by buying the pure oils at a health food store.  Not to knock this formula but I really think that it could be more complex if the company wants to treat it as a unique product and give the consumer a reason to only purchase this formula. 

This product only has one downside but it is pretty large, the product must be used every single day in order to keep the hydration levels the same in the cuticle.  I forgot to use it one night before bed and the next morning, my hands looked exaclty like they did before I began using this product, I would love if there was a product that would actually keep the hydration levels constant since I will end up being a slave to this product if I don't want my cuticles to be awful for the next few winter months.  I can see myself using through bottles of this product really quickly...

photo courtesy of In

Friday, December 23, 2011

Aquolina Pink Sugar Body Mousse

Earlier this season I wrote about the Pink Sugar Glossy Body Gel that had been part of my body product collection for quite a long time, I love that gel but can't deal with the rest of the body product collection.  The Body Mousse is the major illustration in why this is one of my least favorite body product brands and I wish that Aquolina would improve on the quality of the line.  I bought these products for the same initial reason that everyone else did and I will not repurchase for the exact same reason, the quality is just not there even though the fragrance is wonderful.  I think that is what this company banks on to get people to buy the products, they all love the fragrance and want to be able to use it in more ways than just the perfume.  I had stopped using the perfume itself a few years ago but I still got great pleasure from using the scent in body products.

"A rich and luxuriously soft cream based on a compound of limnanthes alba oil with extract of karite butter, to moisturize and nourish the skin after a bath or shower.  Notes: Lily of the Valley, Candy Floss, Licorice, Fruits, Strawberry, Woody Notes, Powdery Musk, Vanilla, Caramel."  Now I never talk about prices on this blog, being a firm believer that if you love something enough than you will figure out how to pay for it, but this collection is way over priced.  The pricing is along the lines of Laura Mercier and LUSH however the quality is something like you would buy at the drugstore.  Many people buy this product once for the smell and then are so disappointed in the product itself that they never repurchase it. 

I was expecting a body butter-like texture for this product but sadly it is nothing like a great butter or cream.  The texture is light and whippy yet somehow sticky at the same time.  This cream has next to no hydrating properties to it and does nothing but fragrance my skin.  It leaves a film on my skin that will annoy me for the rest of the night and the only way to avoid this is to use such a small amount of the product that I get hydration benefits at all.  There is just no point to whatever hydrating ingredients are in this formula, I could find 20 better formulas on the market for practically half of the price.  The formula is why no one ever repurchases this product, I firmly believe that if Pink Sugar improved the product quality, they would have a surefire winner on their hands.  Not even lower the price, just improve the quality of the formula, I would glady pay the full price that is asked for this price if I felt that it actually helped my skin.

The shower gel is great in this line and I might try the regular lotion in an attempt to find something to layer the gel with.  If this doesn't work than I am going to have to find a cream in one of the major notes or just give up on this whole body product line.  Which is such a shame because it smells so great and I will only use the body products now.

photo courtesy of Nordstrom

Thursday, December 22, 2011

My Favorite Products at this Time

I might already be thinking about the spring months but that doesn't mean that I'm not enjoying some lovely holiday beauty products!  Right now I have been using some of the best candy smelling holiday body products and some party ready beauty products.  Even though this is the season of stress, I have been trying to take some time out and enjoy the best part of the holidays - all kinds of fun new beauty products and makeup shades.  This is the best time of the year for body products, especially for those of us like myself who have a major Snow Fairy addiction and have to purchase all of it this time of the year and make it last until next Halloween.

My favorites of the holiday season!

LUSH Snow Fairy Shower Gel - "The fairy is back again this year for her legion of fans.  The sweet bubblegum and cotton candy scent of this shower gel is mixed in with iridescent glitter, making her irresitible to those who love all things pink and fluffy (and those who deny loving all things pink and fluffy too!).  Mark and Mo's daughter Clarie asked for a sweet, shimmery gel when she was 15, so Mark came up with this fragrance.  We'd imagined that it would be popular with girls, but never believed that it would be so popular with grown men too!  Use to wash your body and hair, and smell like a sweetie all day long.  Lathering up in mounds of sparkly bubbles always tickles us pink!  Being a vegetarian company, we use synthetic musk to give Snow Fairy her sweet vanilla-y scent."  This is the perfect cotton candy scent that makes your whole shower smell sweet but doesn't linger after the shower and compete with your perfume.  This is a returning best seller for a reason, this is one of the original cotton candy scents and I think it is the best out of all of them.  I am considering buying another bottle before LUSH completely sells out.

Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Phallic - "Leave your mark with bold, rich, vibrant colors that stand out.  The formula is hard wearing and chip resistant and contains individual finishes from matte to high gloss.  Apply two coats for high intensity and use with Illamasqua Nail Base Coat and Illamasqua Nail Top Coat for the perfect finish.  Make a statement and talk with your hands!"  Phallic is a deep midnight blue shade with a shimmer finish.  This was my favorite shade when I reviewed the product and I am still in love with it, I have done my last few pedicures in it and I keep falling more and more in love with it.  It is the perfect midnight blue with shimmer that can be shine in certain lights.  In certain lights, the shimmer comes out and the shade looks as those it is twinkling on my nails.  This is the best midnight blue shimmer since Ciel de Nuit from Chanel and that is the highest praise that I can give any polish shade.

Urban Decay Eye Shadow in Half Baked - "An industry favorite and our best-selling product!  Available in over 50 shades, our pigment-rich shadows are versatile, blendable, and beautiful.  This is the product we were born to make - our best-seller!  Professionals, celebrities, and makeup junkies swoon for our wide array of shades.  Each one is pigment-rich: we load the shadow with color, and add very few binders (the stuff that holds shadow together), resulting in beautiful color that blends easily and lasts.  Lots of finishes to suit your mood: sparkle, shimmer, duotone, or unsparkly satin.  Our subway token compact comes complete with a window (see your shade without opening), and snaps shut with one hand - no more lost lids."  Half Baked was first introduced to me in the original Naked Palette and now is featured again in the Naked 2 Palette (bought it just haven't finished playing with it to review yet), where I got to play with it again.  It is a "rich gold" and that is exactly what it is.  This is a lovely gold, rich and buttery in texture and is always flattering to my blue eyes.  It made more sense in the original Naked than it did in Naked 2, but I am more than happy to already have a back up of it.

Stella by Stella McCartney - "A fragrance based on the contrast between the freshness and softeness of the rose, and the dark sensuality of amber, Stella is a sophisticated scent focused on an intense sense of feminity.  The concept of Stella McCartney bath line is based on ecological and organic cosmetology, selecting the best natural raw materials and capitalizing on vegetal extracts based on organic agriculture and on extraction methods that respect and protect the natural life force of the plants.  Notes: Rose, Peony Flower, Mandarin, Rose Absolute, Amber."  I just bought another bottle of this scent and the matching roll-on and I have been wearing it almost every single day since.  This has been a favorite fragrance of mine for years and I never cease to get compliments every single time that I wear it.  This is one of the perfect rose fragrances and the amber note in it makes it very unique and adds a depth to the fragrance that is sometimes missing in single rose fragrances.  I also love Stella McCartney and how vegan-friendly all her product lines are.

China Glaze Nail Lacquer in Ruby Pumps - "China Glaze is a professional-level nail enamel made with a special balance of polymers and resins that combine to create a nail lacquer that is long-lasting, chip-resistant, and resistant to color and shine fading.  Will not thicken in the bottle, no thinners necessary."  Ruby Pumps is a bright red with red glitter in it and it is made to look like Dorothy's pumps in the Wizard of Oz, this is the perfect holiday party color.  It is impossible to look at this color and not feel festive.  I have done my past few manicures in this shade to lead right up to the holiday itself.  Wear is ok on this shade, it is bright and shiny however I get tip wear within a day of putting it on, so I do need to redo this manicure more than I do with other shades.

Happy holiday beauty everyone!

photo courtesy of Urban Decay

Philosophy Purity Made Simple Face Wash

Last year, I was all about the Purity Made Simple Foam Face Cleanser in the warm weather months, it is one of the few cleansers that I completely used up and then considered repurchasing again.  I am considering rebuying it next summer, since it is much too light to use this time of the year.  The foam version is very effective to clean my skin in warm weather but this one will dry my skin out too much in the cold, dry air.  So what did I do?  Bought the original Purity Made Simple so I can keep reaping the benefits of the wash in a formula that is much better for dry skin. 

In the past few weeks, I have run out of almost every single piece of skincare and I have bought a whole group of new products from Sephora.  This is unprecedented timing, I have never had everything that I own run out in a two week period.  This means two things: I had a few huge bills from Sephora and I am now using all new products and my skin is having a slight freak out some mornings.  The Boscia Willowbark Breakout Treatment has been very effective in keeping the few new breakouts that I got from this process at bay.  In addition to all the stuff that I have been trying, winter has just arrived and my skin is now much drier than it was a few weeks ago.  My facial skin is my big obsession at the moment and getting it well adjusted to the new products that I am trying.

When I knew that I would need a new face cleanser, I decided to ignore any type of product that contained foaming ingredients or any fancy frills.  I purchased a product that wasn't really new to me, I already stated in the beginning of this post that I had used the foaming version of this face cleanser last year and was very happy with the results in the summer months.  Technically the version that I am using of this product is new, but the overall formula is not. 

Sephora's website states, "A highly effective one-step facial cleanser.  Philosophy Purity Made Simple is a pH-balanced formula that rapidly dissolves dirt and makeup while deep cleaning pores.  The best-selling cleanser contains infusions of sage, chamomile, and carrot.  Purity Made Simple is part of a collection of Philosophy products designed to soothe even the most dry and sensitive skin."  I use this cleanser once in a day in the evening to clean off my makeup and the dirt that has accumulated during the day's activities.  The suggested use of this product is twice a day but I never wash my face twice a day and I don't plan to start at a time of the year when it is very dry and easily irritated.

Also on the Sephora website, I found a few more details about the clinical test results that were found during the product testing.  "100% reported that the cleanser is gentle enough for the eye area.  97% reported effective removal of dirt, oil, and makeup.  97% reported a clean, residue-free finish." 

I have been using this face wash for about two weeks now and so far I have really liked it.  It is best used on wet skin.  I use about a nickel-sized drop to cover my whole face and it is the perfect amount.  It doesn't foam up so I apply it all over my face, massage it in, and rinse it off.  I use it all over my face however I have not tried it on my eye area and I don't plan to.  I use a separate eye makeup remover to get all my eye makeup off, cleansers have never gotten the job done for me and I don't expect one that is this gentle to make a dent in my eye shadow primer and eye liners.  It works well enough at getting my facial makeup off, which is all that I require from a gentle cleanser.

My skin is not tight, dry, or irritated after use of this product and I am really happy with it.  Even though the textures are very different, this face wash and the foaming version work very much the same.  The big difference between the products is in the fragrance; the foam version has a strong lemon scent that was a bit cloying but this version has a light herbal scent that is very nice.  I like the scent of this one much better than the foaming version.  I am actually tempted to buy a huge bottle of this face since I have been getting such great results from it!

photo courtesy of Sephora

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

OPI Nicki Minaj Collection

Nicki Minaj is the newest beauty industry obsession, after the annoucement that she would be pairing up with MAC for the newest Viva Glam shade, she became the toast of the beauty industry and I am willing to bet that we will be seeing even more from her within the next few months.  I am seeing the same trend that we saw with Lady Gaga two years ago and then with Katy Perry last year.  I love all of these women so I am happy to see all of these trends and they end of making me buy all kinds of products and shades that might not have appealed to me before.  The new Viva Glam shade comes out in Feburary so we have a bit to go before we are able to see that shade.

OPI will be releasing a nail polish collection made with Nicki Minaj in January 2012, so I am dubbing 2012 the "year of Nicki Minaj".  Let's see how correct I am, I am betting on a fragrance release and tons of other color products coming out in the upcoming year.  This collection contains six brand new shades, five of which are regular shades and one of which is a crackle finish top coat.  Personally, I am the most excited for the Viva Glam lipstick but I am looking forward to this collection too. 

The fact that Viva Glam teamed up with Nicki Minaj was actually the only reason that I ever gave her music and style a chance.  I used to gag at every wig that she wore and I would refuse to ever listen to her songs.   But when she teamed up with MAC, I downloaded a few of her songs from iTunes discovered that I really liked her.  Thank god for MAC! 

The shades that are in the Nicki Minaj and OPI collection are either bright or glitter finishes, but I would expect nothing less from a collection that was inspired by Nicki Minaj.  This would not be a collection of boring reds and pinks and that is exactly what OPI needs to keep up with Illamasqua and China Glaze.  This collection might inspire me to buy crazy shades from OPI, something that I rarely ever do.  Normally, OPI is the company that I go to for reds and sheers.  This is a whole new concept for me and might actually make me love OPI a bit more than China Glaze for the moment...

First we will start with the regular nail polish shades...

The first shade in named Pink Friday, after the title of Nicki Minaj's first album.  On first glance, this is my early favorite shade of the collection.  Lately, bright pinks for both lips and nails have been my style and I can see this going right into the spring.  I am over the holidays and just so ready for spring!  I am just so looking forward to spring shopping....

Pink Friday is the first shade is the collection.  It is a light blue pink and we all know how much I love blue pinks!  This is a great light blue pink shade and I imagine that this is will be the best shade to match the upcoming Viva Glam Nicki shade.  This is a light blue pink and I wish that I could tell if it has a shimmer or a cream finish but the picture isn't exactly forthcoming as to what the finish of this shde is.   It is the perfect light blue pink and I love it it.  I can't wait to buy this shade and rock it all spring, this is a great shade and I can't wait to wear it.  The second of the the new shades is Did It On 'Em, a bight green that is is so ready for spring.  This is a bright yellow green that is reminescent of a shade that I wore in middle school.  This is another shade that I can't tell if it is a shimmer or a cream.  I doubt that this shade is one that I would use very much on my nails but would use more on my toe nails.  I wish that OPI had a few more details of these shades, I can't really tell what I want to buy from it. 

The next shade is named Fly, a shade that would be great for the spring and summer months.  It is a bright robin's egg blue cream that reminds me a lot of the China Glaze shade For Audrey, a favorite polish of mine already.  I really like this shade but I have to see it in person first because I might not need this if it very close to For Audrey, however unless it is an exact dupe, I will most likely end up buying it because the shade is so pretty.  This is the last of the non-metallic shades, we will look at those two shades next.

The two metallic shades are very very heavy on the silver and chrome, both shades are able to be worn now and well into the spring.  The first shade of this finish is named Metallic 4 Life, a deep metallic charcoal shade.  This one will work best this time of the year but I don't know how well it will translate with the spring trends of light and bright polishes.  In the warmer months, this might be better as a pedicure shade with black or silver sandals.  I will reserve full judgement in this matter until I see it person.  The second shade in the metallic finish is Save Me, a chrome that looks like it has holographic shimmer in it.  This is the wildest of all the shades and another one that would work well in the winter time but also might be better with sandals in the warm weather.  I really like the Metallic 4 Life shade but I think that I will be skipping over the Save Me shade, I doubt that I would get all that much wear from it.

The last polish is one with the popular Crackle finish that was first introduced in the Katy Perry collection last spring.  I thought that the Crackle polishes were really unique and pretty when they first came out but I am now waiting for the trend to end.  Putting a black crackled top coat over a light cream polish looked great but now taking the trend all the way to metallics is beginning to look cheap and trashy, I doubt that I will ever wear a Crackle again after seeing some of the looks that have been created with it.  This shade is named Super Bass Shatter and is my least favorite shade in the collection, it is deep plum metallic Crackle top coat.  I have a feeling that this will take the trend to new level of awful, I can't even imagine how bad this will look over any of the polishes from this collection.  I am skipping over this polish and I cannot wait for this Crackle trend to end!

I love the pink and blue shades in this collection, the pink will look so pretty when paired up with the Viva Glam shade that should be coming out within the next two months!

photo courtesy of OPI

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Boscia Willowbark Breakout Treatment

A few months ago I wrote up the Murad Acne Spot Treatment and praised how gentle it was on my skin.  Instead of making the healing look worse than the blemish itself, that formulation worked slowly but surely and cleared up my skin without creating a dry, red mess.  I finished up my tube of that and decided to try another acne product that is also formulated without benzoyl peroxide or other drying ingredients.  Which is not the easiest task, most of the ones in Sephora contained at least one of the ingredients that doesn't work well with my skin.  I decided to concentrate my efforts on the skincare lines that have earned the Sephora seal for being natural and ended up quickly finding a product in the Boscia line of skincare.

The Willowbark Breakout Treatment really intrigues me because this is the first anti-acne product that contains active plant ingredients that help combat the blemished areas.  "A botanically-based spot treatment for acne blemishes.  Botanical willowbark helps provide relief from breakouts effectively and safely, even for the most sensitive skin.  This unique anti-irritant calms inflammation while soapberry peal cleans and purifies.  A combination of jojoba leaf and Vitamins C and E work with other effective ingredients to help reduce redness, control oil, maintain a clear complexion, and combat free radicals.  Ideal for all skin types, including sensitive skin."  This product is ideal for use twice a day in order to be most effective.

This acne treatment is even less irritating than the Murad formula, which I really like.  My face showed no signs of irritation even when I got product way outside of the blemished area.  This product is not for you if you want a quick fix for a blemish, it took an average of three to four days for the healing process to be complete.  As with the Murad formula, this product excelled at reducing the redness faster than the blemish itself, it made the whole area less noticeable and much easier to cover up.  This might no hold true for everyone, I have reactions to many traditional anti-acne ingredients and the reaction most often manifests in dryness and major redness.  I have already stated that my biggest skincare concern is redness so I would much rather have a formula that takes longer to fully work but doesn't destroy my skin in the meantime.

I really liked the results that I got from this product and I would recommend it but only for others with skin like myself.  This product is very effective for those of us with more sensitive skin and not a ton of breakouts.  however with how slowly this product works, I cannot see that it would be effective for someone with moderate to severe acne, I think that a more traditional formula would give them much better results.  This product is best for those of us who only get the occasional hormonal or stress-related breakout, not for someone who puts acne at the top of their skin issues.

My last thought on this product: I recommend the smaller version of this product.  I made the mistake of buying the large pump bottle instead of the pen.  Well, the large bottle pumps so much product out that I apply it to blemishes and then still have at least half of the pump left.  I imagine that the pen would get rid of this issue.  It is good thing that this product is not irritating since I have often ended up with it all over the blemish and the areas around it.

photo courtesy of Sephora

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Illamasqua Nail Varnish - Shimmer Finish

I have been talking the past few months about my nail polish obsession and therefore that is what I have been the majority of my beauty budget on.  My two current obsessions are China Glaze and Illamasqua.  I tried one polish from Illamasqua last summer and quickly became obsessed with the great formulation and unique shades.  This polish is available in three finishes - Shimmer, Glossy, and Metallic.  I decided to focus on the Shimmer finish polishes to begin with and I have been ordering them from Sephora for the past few weeks.  I wish that this collection was carried at more Sephora stores, the closest one to me that carries this collection is over an hour and a half away and I have to cross state lines to get there...  My Sephora is aware of my love of this line so they will call me when they get sent any of these products by mistake but so far nothing has really been working out in that vein.

The Illamasqua website gives a full product description, "Leave your mark with bold, rich, vibrant colours.  Hardwearing and chip-resistant with individual finishes from matt to high gloss.  Apply two coats for intensity and use with Illamasqua Nail Base Coat and Illamasqua Nail Top Coat for the perfect finish.  Talk with your hands and make a statement."  I bought three Nail Varnish shades in this finish - Phallic, Bacterium, and Baptiste.

Phallic is the first shade that I ordered from this product and the shade that began my whole obsession.  It is only natural that I would try out a new nail polish line with a deep navy blue.  This shade is a "deep midnight blue" with a shimmer finish.  I love this shade, it is the perfect navy blue and the shimmer finish makes it very unique.  I apply two coats of this polish for full coverage, one coat is not near enough for an opaque finish.  In natual light, the shade looks like a midnight blue cream but in certain inside lights or out in the sun, the shimmer lights up and create a lovely, dazzling "lit from within" finish.  This polish is next to Chanel's Blue Satin as one of the best navy blues that I have ever used.  It lasts three days with no chipping and stays color true the whjole time.  Removal of this polish is the only downfall, it removes very hard and it left an awful stain on my nails, I must repaint my nails right after I take this off.  Removal aside, I love this shade and I have been obsessed with it the past few months.

Bacterium is the second shade that I ordered in this finish.  I was initally very unhappy when I opened up the box on this one, the shade in the bottle looked nothing like what was displayed on the Sephora website.  The Sephora website called this color "an opalescent beige" however the Illamasqua website called it a "pearlescent ash ochre".  The Illamasqua website is much closer to what the shade actually looks like.  In the bottle, the shade looks like a warm khaki shimmer and a shade that I never would have ordered if it was described that way.  I was very close to returning this shade right away but I decided to try it on and keep an open mind.  I hated my first manicure with this shade, I thought it looked odd with my skin but the shade began to grow on me after a few hours.  Two coats gives an opaque khaki finish with minimal shimmer and a pearl finish.  One coat gives a sheer khaki finish and the pearl is much more evident, I prefer this shade used in this manner.  It creates a neutral look that is unique enough to cause people a double take.  The wear on this polish was the worst of the three, this one only got me about two days before it began chipping and wearing off, a top coat extended the wear by about a day but it didn't really improve it that much.  Removal was very easy and I have no complaints in that area.  This still isn't my favorite polish but I will wear it for a more natural manicure look.

The last polish that I order was Baptiste, a shade that is on par with Phallic for amazingness.  This shade is another deep tone, perhaps the shimmer finish comes out better in the deep toned polish shades than the lighter ones.  This shade is described by Sephora as a "deep royal purple", it is a very dark and true purple.  I don't own that many purples (I wear reds and blues when I do deep shades) so this one also took a bit of getting used to looking at.  I quickly fell in love with this shade once I got used to seeing the purple on my nails, this is the shade of purple that I think of when I think of royalty.  Two coats minimum are needed for this shade, it had a few issues getting it to cover evenly the first time that I worked with it.  But one is even and fully opaque, it has a "wow" factor that we don't see enough in the new shades of polish.  This one lasted about three days without chipping also but I did need top coat on it to keep the shine factor up.  Removal was better than Phallic but still left some traces on my nails.

My initial Nail Varnish purchases have made me very happy even though I don't know that I still would have bought Bacterium had I seen it in real life.  I love Phallic and Baptiste and I am now wondering if the better shades of this product are the deeper and more intense ones.  I will be trying a shade range of all the other finishes to see if this holds true.  Overall, application is smooth and pretty even (with the exception of the first coat of Baptiste), the brush is easy to work with, and the wear is better than many other brands.  I will be ordering more shades of this polish formula to try all the finishes in it...

photo courtesy of

Friday, December 16, 2011

Shu Uemura Holiday 2011 Collection - Holiday by Wong Kar Wai

Christmas is in less than a week and a half and therefore that means that this is the last of holiday collections.  I was reading magazines last night and I am completely ready for the spring season to begin.  I saved one of the best holiday collections for last, I have heard raves about the holiday collection from Shu Uemura and now we are going to check it out.  Looking back on it, I should have put this collection first since it takes this company forever to ship the products over from Japan and they won't arrive in time to give for gifts if that is your intention.  So next year, I will learn from this and put this collection first in the season...

The holiday collection from Shu Uemura was made in conjunction with film maker Wong Kar Wei.  "For the holiday 2011 season, Shu Uemura comes together with internationally renowned film director Wong Kar Wei.  Shu Uemura introduces a holiday rich in emotions and atmosphere, with beautiful package decoration inspired by Wong Kar Wei's special short film for Shu Uemura 'Mask'.  Indulge in sensuous emotions, experience the essence of beauty, and boldly express your own passion this 2011 holiday season."  This collection contains mostly single products with two sets of nail polish shades and I am looking forward to seeing if this collection is as great as I read that it would be.

The last of the holiday collections for 2011...

Rouge Unlimited Holiday Collection by Wong Kar Wai - Drown in the sensuality of glimmering lips.  Three classy yet playful colors for alluring feminity.  A brightly glittering shade to add a fun, festive shine to lips.
- Rouge Luster - express the heat of passion with this deep, tender red shade and a delicate gold shimmer.
- Pink Flush - caress your lips with this bright, warm pink with a fresh, glossy finish.
- Glitter Fuse - an innocent beige shade with a heavenly splash of golden dust full of hope.

Mini Nail Duo - A set of 2 mini bottles to enjoy rich, glamorous colors alone or to create original nail art to accessorize your fingertips with sparkling drama.
- Bleu Splendor - a set of cool and classy yet playful colors.  S Starry Shine in a midnight blue Christmas sky.
- Festive Rouge - a pair just right for the festive season.  Pearly warm and deep rouge meets golden charm.

Flashing Gold Mini Brush Set - This brush set includes the following brushes.  Cream Color Brush: designed for the application of cream or liquid eye shadows.  It is also an ideal brush for covering/blending blemishes and discolorations.  Powder Brush: ideal for face powder and cheek color application.  Eye Shadow Brush: a basic eye shadow brush for bringing out various effects and provides easy control of eye makeup.  Precision Brush: depending on preference this may be used as a lip or eye liner brush and is ideal for powder or emollient textures.

Limited Edition Wrex+ Brightening Cleansing Oil Advanced Formula - Like watching a scene from "Mask", an exquisite image decorates this edition of Brightening Cleansing Oil.  The perfect way to end a festive day - gently remove your makeup with this cleansing oil for beautiful luminous skin.

Lustrous Glow Powder - This warm, rosy powder with shimmering gold pearls enhances a lustrous glow.  Use to create a natural, transparent complexion or to add a little brush to cheeks.

Pressed Eye Shadow Refill - Experience the infinite color choice for your ever-evolving style.  Truest color payoff and a non-fading finish.  Blends effortlessly for ideal coverage control.  The powders capture light, absorbing and reflecting it for multi-dimensional effect.  Full color spectrum.  Five different textures.  Matte (m): A velvety, even finish gives vivid color with a smooth finish.  Pearl (p): A silky shimmer of light for luminous radiance.  Iridescent (ir): Captivating shades offer glimmering reflections of changing colors.  Metallic (me): Smooth like liquid with a metallic glow.  Glitters (g): Abudant sparkles for glistening glamour.
- g Gold - sparkling gold
- m Light Beige 813 - matte light beige
- me Soft Purple 735 - metallic lavender
- p Dark Purple 781 - sparkling purple aubergine
- g Silver - sparkling silver
- me Medium Blue 686 - metallic denim blue
- ir Medium Blue 675 - iridescent denim blue
- p Dark Blue 696 - pearl midnight blue

Quad Custom Case Black - For 4 Eye Shadow refills or 2 Glow On blush refills or 2 Eye Shadow refills and 1 Glow On Blush refill.  Shu Uemura's pursuit of perfection takes form in this innovative palette case.  The jet black palette has a rich, lacquered finish, but the lid and base of both have slightly different tones, this color scheme is inspired by the harmony of the "wa", or traditional Japanese style art.  An eco-concept, seeking a design without glue, plastic frames or other elements that may end up in a landfill.  Shu Uemura's refill palette is like a game, with one small movement you can change your eye shadow selection to match your every desire.

Glittery Mascara - Sparkling glitter creates a mysterious golden veil and a hologram reflection on your eye lashes.  Use as a topcoat over mascara for maximum glamour, or use alone for subtle, sparkling finish to make your heart dance.
- Glorious Masquerade - golden glitter

Jeweled Love Accent False Eye Lashes - Enhance your feminity with these partial eye lashes to cast a tender and alluring gaze.  Lashes blended with fluttery, classical bordeaux feathers to create a soft, gorgeous look.  Decorated with gold crystals, it is perfect for a holiday celebration.

Dance in Glitter Premium Edition False Eye Lashes - Raceful and luscious eye for special nights.  Dancing in a shower of shining glitter, entice all those around you with these delicate, ravishing lashes.

This is the most unique collection that I have seen this season and since this is the last one, I know that it won't be topped at all.  Actually the look created by this collection seemed to inspire what Cosmopolitan stated was the "perfect" look for getting dressed up on New Year's Eve.  The glittering false lashes and glitter polish are perfect for getting very dressed up and celebrating.  The eye lashes are too out there for me to pull off but I do like the glittering blue nail polish set that it is used on the model.  That set would be my favorite piece of the collection and I am very tempted to order it from Japan. 

My other favorite pieces are the Rouge Luster lip shade, I have heard great remarks about Shu Uemura's lipstick shades and I really want to try one out.  I also love the eye shadows from this company so I want to order a few shades from this collection: I want the silver, gold, and lavender shades. 

I love this collection and I am glad that many of the products are still in stock so that I can order a few.  Holiday is always fun but I must say that I can't wait for the spring collections to begin!

photo courtesy of Shu Uemura

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Giorgio Armani Holiday 2011 Collection - Madreperla

I feel like the last few collections that we have looked at have been very small and I'm not sure if this is a good or bad thing.  Let me explain.  I am happy that companies are focusing on quality over quantity and aren't just creating giant collections of products and shades in the hopes that people who love the brand buy everything.  However, all these small collections makes it seem like holiday isn't as big a deal as the other seasons and considering that I give lots of beauty gifts this time of the year, I love to see variety.  Though I might just be hitting the time in the holiday season where I am just sick of everything that has to do with the holidays and the season in general.  The last statement is most likely the most accurate. 

This collection is named Madreperla and Megan Fox is the muse for the collection again.  At this point, I believe that she is the model for the whole line at this point.  This collection consists of twopalettes; one for the face, one for the eyes, and three new shades for the lips.  I think that I might be most interested in the face palette since I have seen a lot of great picks for the eyes and lips this season but nothing great for the face so far.
The newest collection from Armani...

Face Palette Holiday Color 2011 Madreperla - Armani's new limited edition holiday color collection features a signature black lacquered compact.  For a satin eye effect, dress up your eyes with two harmonies of three shades in one shot.
- pale beige/golden beige/gray

Eye Palette Holiday Color 2011 Madreperla - Armani's new limited edition holiday color collection features a signature black lacquered compact.  For a satin eye effect, dress up your eyes with two harmonies of three shades in one shot.  Harmony #1 includes beige pearl, metallic gold, light green pearl.  Harmony #2 includes white pearl, metallic taupe, and lavender pearl.

Gloss d'Armani Holiday Color 2011 Madreperla - Concentrated high definition color, fusing shine, comfort, and lasting hold.  When one take is enough: Gloss d'Armani's flexible velvet applicator adds volume and defines contours instantly and effortlessly, with expert touch.  Technology: Color-Fil Shine Technology, with a translucent base that traps pigments and pearlescent particles for a hydrated, silky smooth feeling without any stickiness.  Comfortable, stay-fast color is like a second skin that remains true for eight hours.  Treat yourself to lacquered lips.  Armani's new limited edition holiday color collection features must-have Gloss d'Armani, now available in three new shades.
- 404 - deep ruby red
- 603 - deep brown
- 606 - deep cool purple

I think that this is one of the first collections that I can honestly say that I dislike pretty much every product in this whole collection.  I hate all the lip shades, I don't find any of them very wearable.  the eye palettes are nice but I don't need any of those shades so there is no point in me buying them.  I also don't find the face palette to be all that wearable either since it contains the gray hue in it...

photo courtesy of Giorgio Armani

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Make Up For Ever Holiday 2011 Collection - Wild and Chic Collection

The holidays are getting closer and closer and that means that we are coming to the end of the holiday collections, I believe that we have less than five of them left to look at.  Today's choice is a collection from Make Up For Ever that is a small collection of sets and palettes.  This collection is named Wild and Chic and the shades from it could work equally well for a fall or holiday collection.  This collection is based on the python prints that we have been seeing all over the runways and print magazines since the beginning of the fall season.  This collection is not a traditional holiday looking collection however it is still a great looking group of sets.  The one drawback about this collection is that it mostly contains eye makeup products, I wish that there was some more variety in this collection...
"Take a walk on the wild side.  You have seen it on the catwalks, in the shops, and worn by fashionistas around the globe, the Python print is back!  And Make Up For Ever is making the most of it!  For this holiday collection, Make Up For Ever takes up the trend and creates arty python prints, showcased in objects of desire.  Clutch style palettes, Minaudiere cases, holding selections of Eye Shadows, Aqua Creams, mini Aqua Eyes or mini Lab Shines.  A new limited edition Wild and Chic collection with an offbeat tone directly inspired by the fashion trends.  May the safari begin..."

Here is the collection...

Wild and Chic Must Have Palette - The Wild and Chic Palette is our must have product for this collection.  This compact clutch-style cardboard palette decorated in an anthracite gray snake print holds six existing eye shadow shades and a mini Black Aqua Eyes, fabulous to create multiple harmonies.  Saturated with matte or pearly pigments, this eye shadow selection will give you that perfect intense and radiant color result for the urban jungle out there.
- pale champagne gold pearl/pale gold shimmer/matte olive/reddish copper shimmer/deep matte chocolate/deep matte forest green

Purple Minaudiere - The Wild and Chic Aqua Cream and Aqua Eyes Minaudiere is a selection of your 4 beauty faves: 2 Aqua Creams and 2 mini Aqua Eyes, presented in a glam collector purple snake print metallic box.  Aqua Eyes are great no fade, no smudge, long-lasting eye pencils.  Their creamy, subtly iridescent texture lights up the eyelids with extra fine pearly particles.  Aqua Cream are fabulous waterproof eye shadows with an impeccable hold that does not crease or run.  Highly concentrated in mother-of-pearl and pigments in each of its shade, its pearly texture offers an intense payoff making the colors look luminous and instantly radiant on the skin.
- Aqua Eyes - Matte Black and Pearly Brown
- Aqua Cream - Anthracite and Taupe

Khaki Minaudiere - The Wild and Chic Aqua Eyes Minaudiere is a selection of 5 mini Aqua Eyes presented in a trendy khaki snake print metallic case.  These long lasting, highly pigmented eye pencils are great no fade, no smudge eye liners.  Their creamy, sublty iridescent texture lights up the eyelids with extra fine pearly particles.
- Matte Black/Black with Purple Highlights/Pearly Brown/Copper/Forest Green

Turquoise Minaudiere - The Wild and Chic Shine Minaudiere is a selection of 4 Lab Shine Glosses presented in a trendy turquoise snake print metallic case.  The Lab Shine lip gloss mirror formula is light catching and provides a spectacular and intense shiny result.  Specially designed to achieve an ultra-bright effect, its silky brush ensures an optimal and dazzling coverage.
- Light Beige/Fresh Pink/Electric Rose/Ruby Red

Premium Aqua Cream Palette - Wild and Chic Aqua Cream Premium is a set of 10 best selling Aqua Cream products and one 5N brush, presented in a glam collector metallic clutch style box decorated in black snake print.  Aqua Cream are fabulous waterproof eye shadows with an impeccable hold that does not crease or run.  Highly concentrated in mother-of-pearl and pigments in each of its shade, its pearly texture offers intense payoff making the colors look luminous and instantly radiant on the skin.
- charcoal/taupe/white/gold/copper/pale pink/mauve/deep brown/warm pink/violet

My favorite pieces of the collection are the minaudieres, these are some of the best gifts that I have seen so far this season - I would love to give on of these or get one for myself.  The one that I would love to have for myself is the Turquoise with the lip glosses in it, I have never tried any of the lip products from this company and this looks like an awesome way to try them out.  The Wild and Chic palette is awesome too and I must buy this for myself.

These might be the best gifts of the season!!

photo courtesy of Make Up For Ever

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Bobbi Brown Holiday 2011 Collection - Party Collection

Bobbi Brown's holiday collection is all about the fun and parties of the holiday season - which is exactly what we should be celebrating this time of the year!  I am all about having fun and as I stated earlier this season, lots of people tend to forget about that this time of the year and more stressed out than anything else.  Bobbi is so inspired by the parties and the fun of this season that she even released a new fragrance named Party to complement all the lovely makeup that is in this collection.  This collection is all shimmer and great shades for both lips and eyes.  I am so excited to look at these products!

The Party Collection from Bobbi Brown!

Onyx and Silver Eye Paint Palette - Accent eyes with the cool silvers and icy blues in this palette.  these long-wearing, densely pigmented shadows can be applied wet or dry for a variety of effects.  A unique combination of metallic powders, translucent oils, and polymers deliver a lustrous, highly-reflective finish.
- Tinsel - light silver
- Silver - blue silver
- Blue Onyx - deep indigo blue
- Lava - black with silver pearl

Chocolate and Gold Eye Paint Palette - Warm up your eyes for the holidays with this palette of golds and bronzes.  These long-wearing, densely pigmented shadows can be applied wet or dry for a varoety of effects.  A unique combination of metallic powers, transulcent oils, and polymers deliver a lustrous, highly-reflective finish.
- Gold - pale gold
- Bronze - beige gold
- Black Gold - black with gold pearl
- Chocolate - rich born with gold pearl

Party Eye Palette - Pop the bubbly!  Champagne, gold, and copper shades will accentuate and complement any party attire for the holidays.  Includes a Mini Dual Ended Shadow/Eyeliner Brush.
- Bone Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow - off white
- Champagne Quartz Metallic Eye Shadow - champagne pink
- Pebble Metallic Eye Shadow - pinky grey brown
- Pink Blaze Sparkle Eye Shadow - golden rose
- Copper Sand Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow - golden brown
- Black Chocolate Eye Shadow - blackest plum

Cool Party Eye Palette - With this versatile palette, you can choose to keep it cool and icy or choose to go for a more dramatic smoldering eye.  These are the perfect shade options to go from day to night, with just the right amount of shimmer and sparkle.  Includes a Mini Dual Ended Shadow/Eyeliner Brush.
- White Eye Shadow - pure white
- Iced Blue Metallic Eye Shadow - pale icy blue
- Rockstar Metallic Eye Shadow - medium metallic gray
- Sterling Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow - medium silver blue
- Gunmetal Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow - dark charcoal blue
- Onyx Sparkle Eye Shadow - black sparkle

Ultimate Party Collection - This collection features everything a girl about town needs to look party ready.  With eight matte, Metallic, Shimmer, and Sparkle Eye Shadows plus four Glitter Lip Glosses, this palette will add a special touch of holiday fun to any look.  Includes a Mini Lip Brush and Mini Eye Shadow Brush.
- Navajo Metallic Eye Shadow - creamy pinkish white
- Chrome Patina Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow - silver khaki
- Pewter Chrome Eye Shadow - cool bronze metallic
- Plum Steel Metallic Eye Shadow - gray plum with silver pearl
- Crushed Granite Sparkle Eye Shadow - pale silver lilac
- Antique Gold Metallic Eye Shadow - deep gold sparkle
- Black Topaz Metallic Eye Shadow - deep green with gold pearl
- Rave Glitter Lip Gloss - deep chocolate plum
- Soiree Pink Glitter Lip Gloss - baby pink with silver flecks
- Iced Lilac Glitter Lip Gloss - light lilac with silver flecks
- Tinsel Glitter Lip Gloss - bright pink with gold pearl

Party Shimmer Brick - For the holiday season, Bobbi adds Party Shimmer Brick to her iconic collection.  This high luster combo of gold and silver will brighten your face for a glowing effect.

Dual Ended Eye Liner - Bobbi'e Dual Ended Eye Liner, one side brightens, while the other side defines for long-wearing that doesn't fade.  A unique combination of soft waxes and oils, plus a high concentration of pigments provides silky-smooth application and dense, even color.
- Jet and Chrome - black and silver
- Caviar and Gold - blackest brown and yellow gold
- Chocolate and Bronze - dark brown and golden chocolate

Lip Color - Bobbi's original formula treats lips to rich color with a soft-matte finish.  Infused with Vitamins E and C as well as Beeswax, it also moisturizes and comforts lips.
- Party Alice - pink rose
- Party Rose - deep berry

High Shimmer Lip Gloss - Bobbi's new lip gloss combines gorgeous, light catching shimmer with lasting, non-sticky shine.  Made with fine pearls and clear pigments, High Shimmer Lip Gloss stays color-true and gives lips beautiful, brilliant dimension.  Plus it's enriched with emollients and Vitamins C and E to moisturize, condition, and protect lips, so they feel as good as they look.  Whether you wear it on your own or on top of your favorite Lip Color, the new tapered applicator lets you apply it like a pro.
- Silver Pearl - silver with pink pearl
- Gold Pearl - yellow gold with pearl
Shimmer Lip Gloss - Bobbi has sized up all her glosses to give you an extra dose of shine.  Shimmer Lip Gloss offers beautiful, non-sticky shine with a touch of iridescence and is perfect on its own or over your favorite lipstick.  Formulated with Aloe Extract to soothe and soften lips; Vitamins C and E for anti-oxidant protection; and Jojoba and Avocado Oils to moisturize lips.
- Black Pearl - dusty mauve

Bobbi's Party Eau de Parfum - Bobbi's new fragrance for the holiday season will put you in a festive mood.  Featuring a rich bouquet of violet leaves, rose petals, and sandalwood, it's both classic and feminine, making in a perfect match for a cocktail dress or cozy sweater.

Lip Gloss Trio - Shimmer, sparkle, and shine.  Bobbi's Lip Trio is the perfect gift and back for a limited time in three beautiful shades and textures.  Now available in our original 4.2 ml lip gloss size.  Wear each shade alone for a quick pop of color or layer over lipstick for extra shine.  Includes Bare Sparkle High Shimmer Lip Gloss, Aubergine Lip Gloss, and Pastel Pink High Shimmer Lip Gloss.

Love, love, love this collection!  The eye palettes in this collection are among two of the best that I have seen all season.  I think that the brown and gold is my favorite of the two since all of those shades will work very well with my blue eyes.  The Ultimate Party palette might also be the best palette that I have seen this whole season and I am hoping that this will be sitting under my Christmas tree on Christmas morning, I will be sending out some strong hints to family over the next few days.  I will be sending the same hints out about the newest Shimmer Brick, I haven't even tried a Shimmer Brick yet but this one is so lovely that I want it just for the design in the powder.

Last but not least, I see another new rose fragrance!  Adding fragrances to the holiday collections is a great idea and one that I hope that we continue to see over the next few seasons, I need to seek this one out too!

photo courtesy of Bobbi Brown