Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Review and Swatches: Tarte and Bare Escentuals

Ok, so... I've been meaning to do a review on this stuff for weeks now; since these products were purchased  during Black Friday weekend. Still, some of these products are available individually regardless, so I figured I'd mention them as more gift ideas :D

I purchased 3 sets: 1 Tarte and 2 Bare Escentuals. These were AMAZING deals at the time; for example, the Tarte set included a full sized amazonian clay blush, a full sized amazonian clay cream shadow, and an eye brush for $22... For those of you that shop for Tarte cosmetics, you know the full sized blush ALONE is $25. So you really can't argue here. The other 2 sets were $10 each.

Now, again, while these may no longer be available as sets anymore, I figured I could still do a review on them since the majority is available all on it's own, so you all might be interested in them. :)

First up is the Tarte set I mentioned. It came with an Amazonian Clay Blush in 'Flush,' an Amazonian Clay Eye Shadow in 'Slate,' and an eyeshadow brush. Flush is a berry-pink blush that is HIGHLY pigmented. Actually, I was very intimidated by this color since I'm extremely pale... However, when used with a VERY light hand, it gives a nice 'flushed' tint to your cheeks, kinda like you've been out in the cold for a while. Slate is like a champagne-taupe color. I'm really not too sure about how I feel about this product quite yet, simply because I haven't used it very much. However, when doing the swatches for it, the formula seemed way too drag and draggy. It also set very quickly, making it hard to work with. Now, it could just be that I'm not using it correctly, but once I get a better grasp on it, I'll update my review on it ^_^;;

Amazonian Clay Blush and Eyeshadow 

Amazonian Clay Blush and Eyeshadow  (natural lighting)

Amazonian Clay Blush and Eyeshadow (Flash) 

Swatch: A.C. Eyeshadow in 'Slate' and A.C. Blush in 'Flush' [natural lighting] 

Swatch: A.C. Eyeshadow in 'Slate' and A.C. Blush in 'Flush' [flash] 

Next are the two Bare Escentual sets. Both had a specific theme to them; one being for eyes while the other was more of for the total face. 

The eye set came with a full sized "Flawless Definition" mascara in black and two deluxe sample eyeshadows:
-Cultured Pearl: a pearly off-white color
-Muse: a satiny charcoal

The mascara is interesting in the sense that it's not the way I remember it. I once used to use this mascara a while back, and the brush was way different. Back then, it was like a wirey pipe-cleaner type applicator. Now, it's a rubber applicator with shorter bristles. I might like this one a bit more, simply because I think the bristles give better separation of the lashes. The shadows are very nice for something like a simple yet classic look. They are a slight bit sheer, but also buildable (especially in the case of Muse). Paired with the mascara, it's perfect. 

The face set included:
-Bare Minerals Natural lipgloss in Citrus Tart: Sheer golden peach
-Bare Radiance all-over face color: shimmery peach highlight
-SPF 15 Mineral veil in Translucent

The lip gloss is pretty sheer, but has a sort of "Your lips but better" look to it. It's not really on the sticky side, but has more of a thick cream feel. There's very light fragrance which doesn't really bother me, nor do I think it's strong enough to bother anyone else for that matter. It also has a brush applicator which I like since it feels like I get more control of the product. The Bare Radiance powder give a very shimmery peach glow. On my skin, it's almost like a subtle bronzer, as if I had been walking out in the sun for a little while. As for the mineral veil, It's a very nice setting powder to place over your makeup for a flawless finish. I've honestly used this stuff non-stop for the past god-knows-how-many years now. It truly leaves my skin looking like it has an air-brushed finish.

 Bare Escentuals eye and face sets

Bare Escentuals eye and face sets [flash] 

Flawless Definition mascara wand 

Natural Lip Gloss in Citrus Tart 

Swatches: 'Muse', 'Cultured Pearl', Bare Radiance, and Citrus Tart [natural light] 

Swatches: 'Muse', 'Cultured Pearl', Bare Radiance, and Citrus Tart [flash]

Hopefully, this will be helpful for anyone who may want to get these sort of items as stocking stuffers for the holidays, or just in general. I'm hoping to get one more post up for a gift idea. I've just fallen so far behind with everything going on. So, hopefully the world won't end before then... LOL I KID!

Over the weekend, I hit Holiday Matsuri and had an amazing time! Got to meet J Michael Tatum (Sebastian from 'Black Butler' [Kuroshitsuji]), who I thought I'd NEVER meet since everyone convinced me that he never went to Florida conventions; as well as a few other amazing actors. Can't even expressed how much I spazzed when Mr. Tatum and Todd Haberkorn sat next to my friend and  for lunch. I'm sure all the surrounding fangirls wanted to kill us xDD

It's certainly an experience I'd never forget. I gotta admit, I have a bit of a starstruck crush on Tatum, even if he's gay. Hahaha! ^/////^

Quinton Flynn (Axel from Kingdom Hearts) singing "The Yaoi Song" while Todd Haberkorn (Italy from Hetalia and Hikaru from Ouran High School) sits on J Michael Tatum's (Sebastian from Black Butler) lap. {I SHIP IT!!!}

Hahahaha! Well, that's all for now. 
So, 'til next time~
Stay beautiful, both inside and out~<3


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Review and Swatches: Too Faced Bon Bons Palette

Omg~ Lauren is actually posting reviews again?

Haha~! Yes, I'm back from my hiatus. With a lot to catch up on might I add. The past few weeks have been rough. I've slowly been getting better about Cody's death, as well as going out of my mind at work. I volunteered for some extra shifts in the security department which bumped me up to 52 1/2 hours last week alone. 12 1/2 hours of overtime leaves me with no room to complain xP

Also getting ready for a holiday-based anime convention this weekend, so my brain is totally FRIED. Between prepping for that, working on photos for reviews (which there's A LOT, lemme tell ya), and re-recording tutorials for youtube, I question how I managed. xD

I figured I'd start off with the more holiday based reviews. A tad late, yes, but perhaps they may help for some last minute gift ideas.

This is for the amazing Too Faced Bon Bons palette!

This palette was one of the more appealing sets that Too Faced had released this year. Now, don't get me wrong, the rest of their holiday collection is amazing as well. However, this palette had more brand new shades than the rest of them. For example, the majority of eyeshadow shades in their Sweet Indulgence palette (available at Sephora) had a lot of shades that are either available in other palettes OR on their own. So, this one naturally seemed like the better buy if you're like me and have pretty much every palette Too Faced had to offer. LOL

This palette contains 12 eyeshadows, a deluxe sample sized Shadow Insurance in the Candlelight shade, and a full sized LashGasm mascara in black. Now, a few of the shades are repeats, which I'll go into more detail about later, but the majority are brand new shades made just for the holidays :D

The packaging of this palette, while not as visually appealing as the GORGEOUS packaging they had last year for their Sweet Dreams palette/collection, is still cute. It's much more simple looking, with a pale pink velvet-covered box laced with gold. It closes with a magnetic flap, like most of Too Faced's other palettes.

The size of the eyeshadows are about the sized of the Sweet Dreams palette's (0.03 oz.). The shades included are:
-Vanilla (matte bone)
-Cut the Cake (heathered mist) [also available in the Romantic Eye palette]
-Framboise (Dark smokey plum)
-Coffee Bean (matte coffee) [also available in the Matte Eye palette]
-Peach Fuzz (peachy gold) [also available in the Summer Eye palette and Sexpresso/Peach Fuzz duo]
-Hot Cocoa (chocolate)
-Candy Rose (pink sparkle)
- Lovey Dovey (sable brown) [also available in the Lovey Dovey duo]
-Nude Beach (nude peach) [also available in the Natural Eye palette]
-Cinnamon Sugar (golden bronze)
-Marzipan (medium orange-brown)
-Licorice Latte (black with bronze sparkle)

Like with most other Too Faced palettes, it comes with some tutorials. However, instead of the usual cards, these are on a foldable sheet. I dunno how I feel about this. I think the cards would be much more durable.

Top row: Vanilla, Cut the Cake, Framboise, Coffee Bean
Middle row: Peach Fuzz, Hot Cocoa, Candy Rose, Lovey Dovey
Last row: Nude Beach, Cinnamon Sugar, Marzipan, Licorice Latte

As always, Too Faced never really disappoints me. Even with shades like "Peach Fuzz", which may look like  it has no pigmentation; it's actually one of my favorite subtle highlights (which I'm sure I've mentioned in the past). Cut the Cake might be the only one that needs a bit of work to get it more visible. As a whole, this palette is very neutral, the most stand-out-ish sort of shades being in the top row with the purple shades. There's a nice variety of finishes from matte to shimmer to satin, which is nice. It leaves room for many possibilities as far as looks go.

In my opinion, this palette would make a lovely gift for any Too Faced lover. It would also make a suitable gift for someone who prefers neutrals, or is even new to makeup all together. At a price of $42, it's well worth it, especially since you get the primer and mascara with it! :D

Hoping to get back on track with my posts. There's still a few things I feel are worth mentioning for the holidays ^u^

'Til next time,
Stay beautiful, both inside and out~ <3