Monday, January 31, 2011

Face of the Day 1.31.2011- Smoky Fun

e.l.f. blush, shadow, and gloss
Oh, man, is it the end of January already?! I feel like the laziest bum alive, and as though I have done nothing to better myself in this new year...well, I started a blog...big whoop! I think just so that I don't feel like a big-ol'-lard butt that I am going to do a beginner yoga lesson on Netflix today. Gotta loose quite a bit of weight to stop my knee and back pain, ya know. Vigorous makeup application isn't gonna shed those pounds ladies, but for me neither is inhaling a huge carton of Whoopers at night! Oops.

How's everyone's week looking? Mine is going to be busy busy busy with e.l.f. week right around the corner, but I'm so excited I'm starting already by putting on my best e.l.f. faces (or just having fun with stuff) to refresh my product memory and give you all the best details possible. I am tired though, and haven't been sleeping so good...probably why I overdid the makeup this morning in an attempt to pick up the neuron-fire. Alas, no luck, so today's official posts are gonna be relaxed so I can keep up preparations for this and next week. Keep on chugging!!! (Caffeine, that is.)

Dior Creme de Gloss in Rouge Nectar and Fig Nectar

$27.00 for 0.2 fl oz.
Alright, trying to power through as much as possible and start preparing the photos and reviews for e.l.f. week, I've been edging on a bit of burnout. A good bath and mask tonight should set me right!

Moving on, Dior Creme de Gloss is quite aptly named. The formula is cream-smooth and packed with pigment like no other gloss I know (consistently across colors). I purchased two colors: a lovely basic mauve with silvery micro-shimmer (641 Fig Nectar) and a wow true red with very subtle gold sheen (845 Rouge Nectar). First, these are really pleasant for me to wear because the sticky glosses (namely Chanel Glossimers) are erksome--I just don't like sticky, even if it lasts longer. That just means a feeling I don't like lasts longer, and I certainly don't like reapplying sticky to my lips. Personally I prefer to just reapply a pleasurable product.

Dior Rouge Creme de Gloss in 641 Fig Nectar on top, 845 Rouge Nectar on bottom

Kirkland Signature by Borghese Mineral Lip Shine

From top left to bottom right: Natural Shine, Nude, Bare, and Bliss
Budget hunters, I introduce you to an awesome way to get more bang for you beauty-buck!!! Hear ye, hear ye, Borghese makes shopping at Costco so much better for the cosmetic-obsessed and offers some magnificent options like lipgloss, mascara, foundation, and a full line of skincare products (almost all of which I own and love).
Always blending nature with technology, Borghese brings the natural beauty of mineral makeup to a new color collection. This lush, vitamin-enriched formula pampers and nurtures the delicate lip area, and is free of parabens, talc and oil. Infused with subtle color and shimmer, the finish makes lips look--and feel--perfectly natural.
Package comes with 4 colors for $9.99 (each gloss is 0.11 oz):
Bliss      a milky-clear gloss with white micro-shimmer
Bare      a peachy beige with gold, orange, and pink shimmer (looks like chunkier shimmer)
Nude      a slightly rosy beige with gold shimmer (looks the most shimmer-packed)
Natural Shine      a rosy mauve beige without shimmer

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Rimmel London Stay Matte Clarifying Foundation in Ivory 100

$6.99 for 1 fl. oz
It's a sweatshirt kind of day for me. I keep getting just the most mediocre sleep ever, not bad but certainly not good, and it's most likely because my sodium intake is through the roof (yes, I have had high blood pressure in the past because I love salty foods). But, after feeding Sparky and spending some time with that big furball, I got down to blogging business and am now reviewing my favorite drugstore foundation.
"Shine Control for 12 hours matte coverage. With SkinPure Complex for a visibly purified complexion and gentle botanical extracts to hep soothe sensitive skin. Oil-free. Non-comedogenic. Non-acnegenic. Fragrancefree. Paraben free."
Rimmel London is my favorite drugstore brand pretty-much-period because I am an anglophile and because I find a consistent idea behind all their products. This foundation may not be literally clarifying my skin, but it's not clogging my pores or making my skin itch; I don't get an oil slick on my face by end-of-day and can carry this around with me constantly as 'backup.'

DiorSkin Nude Natural Glow Creme-Gel Makeup Compact

This item's review was followed up with these comments!
010 Ivory ($48.00 for 0.35 oz/10g)
Not gonna lie, this is one of those products I've had to use everyday to find out bit-by-bit what I like and don't like about it; no instant reading here! To start, general observations. There is only 0.35 oz of product here when the usual foundation is 1 oz (and this is described as a foundation), so right there $48 is steep. This is only available in six colors, all with neutral undertones, so anyone leaning heavily warm or cool (seems counter-intuitive, but that's yellow or pink respectively) will find this won't quite match.

Day 1: Feels great on the skin but coverage is quite sheer and the 'creme formula that turns to powder' effect makes it difficult, if not impossible to layer for more coverage. The sponge inside gets the creme on it then the product dries to a powder finish on the sponge too, meaning a difficult second/reuse of sponge. The compact is designed oddly; for example, the clear plastic in between the sponge and product has to be lifted to get at the product, so you have the plastic over the mirror. You might think "it's clear, so you can still see in the mirror" and you're sorta right. Really you can only see some blurry reflection because there is 'CD' emblazoned on the plastic, and when you placed the sponge back on the plastic it gets a little smeared with product, hence smeary-mirror. Must do more research...

CHANEL Rouge Allure Laque in Ming

$32.00 for 0.2 fl oz.
I swear I'm not trying to sound like a broken record, but this was another disappointment from Chanel. I'm going to have a hard time describing why because I can barely put my finger on a reason. None the less, here goes.

The Rouge Allure Laque formula is basically a liquid lipstick: smooth semi-opaque to opaque color payoff with a comfortable feel and a decent wear time. Ming is a soft yet vibrant pink (lighter color but still pigmented) with a rather glossy finish without the tackiness of a Glossimer. These last about three to four hours on me without heavy drinking, eating, talking, etc.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

E.L.F. WEEK- February 6th -12th

Enjoy a chance to splurge but only in spirit not in price!!! During the second week of February, we'll be going over a ton of EyesLipsFace products. Keep reading to see the day-to-day breakdown!

Serum Saturday: CHANEL Précision Pureté Idéale Sérum

$75.00 for 1.0 fl oz.
My god, Sparky has been a huge sweetie this week and is coping well with all the change (a taste of the nip helps him now-and-then), but Snowy's interaction with him is driving the dog-person in me nuts! Seriously, I'm not even a little used to cats yet...ugh. On a brighter note, this lovely, snow-covered morning at the end of the first month of this new year, I'm reviewing maybe my favorite serum I've ever used!
A purifying oil-free serum formulated with an advanced Marine-Bio Extract to help rebalance skin. Helps control oil production and reduces the appearance of pores for clear, smooth and refined complexion.
The Intense Refining Skin Complex from CHANEL was actually a bit of a shock for me. I'm not trying to knock the brand, I promise, but I think the reason I own as much CHANEL as I do is because I had this pedestal vision of the products. However, as with every brand, it's some stuff works for me and some stuff really, really doesn't. This is the product I believe I will use for years to come (budget allowing).

Bobbi Brown Sheer Cheek Tint in Sheer Lilac: My Valentine Blush?

 $22.00 for 0.13 oz/3.8g

Let's not beat around the bush: I am tight with my sheers and neutrals. That said, every once in a while a product stands out to me because of....something special. Now, this Bobbi Brown Sheer Cheek Tint is sheer and for me neutral/natural, but this is soooo easy to use and looks phenomenal! This just gives me the perfect pink glow, a gentle flush at the cheeks that has a dewy finish, not greasy (looking or feeling)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Clinique Long Last Lipstick: A Great Formula and Good Price

All Clinique lipsticks are fragrance-free which is really nice when your nose is sensitive or you don't want any other slight fragrance of powder/blush/etc. This long last formula is silky smooth and buttery--that's my big word for this, buttery--while feeling just a tad moisturizing and super comfortable. This lipstick never makes the fine lines of my 20-something lips look deeper or look more uneven when not smiling. Just a really really nice formula.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Dior HydraLife Pro-Youth Comfort Cream for Dry Skin

This is a lovely moisturizer that while it may have induced a thin film of oil on my face by the time I awoke the next morning never broke me out. That is a rare thing indeed, which is why I can say that this is not a clogging formula even for my combo/oily skin!

But Anie, why did you buy a moisturizer for dry skin? Well, with the weather finally getting into the 2-degree-but-feels-like-minus-3 range, my skin has been getting flaky around the nose and chin. The nose is partially due to allergies and a runny nose, but the fact still stood--I needed moisture! So the SA at Nordstrom was very specific in saying that although the Comfort Creme was not for normal/combo or even oily skin, it would give me the extra moisture I was looking for. She was....not entirely correct but didn't give me a product that didn't work.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Estée Lauder High Gloss in Honey

03 Honey ($16.00 for 0.27 fl oz.)*
What a pleasant surprise this gloss is! Don't let the initial tackiness/stickiness fool you because once this mirror-shine gloss warms up to your lips it is smooth and buttery and super comfy. I always have that immediate gut reaction of "gross, it's so sticky," but several times now I have reached for this color and been hit again with the realization: oh yeah, I like this one.

Honey is a semi-sheer beige gloss with a bronze lean and a whole lotta shine. You can see from the pictures this is not a gloss you mistake for someone just licking their her lips--this is High Gloss, and thus an appropriate name. The shine lasts about 3-4 hours depending on what you're doing with your lips (eating/drinking, talking, kissing, etc.) and most of the time the color is undetectable about an hour after application. However, a big bonus with the comfort of this gloss is how hydrated my lips feel; even if they aren't plump with moisture, they never feel dry with this on.

Estée Lauder Pure Color EyeShadows in Honey Drop and Copper Penny

Single shadows are $20.00
Remember the reviews of EL products so far? Well, most of those were from the same purchase/gift with purchase and this is no exception (see also the High Gloss review, coming soon). I'm glad that I didn't just the Wild Sable line by it's cover--and by that I mean, I'm glad I didn't realize both were the same type of shadow because it may have tainted my decision to get the good brown of the matte Wild Sable. These two shadow from the sample palette, 47 Honey Drop and 54 Copper Penny, are another story all together.

Mask of the Month: CHANEL Précision Masque Déstressant Pureté

$50.00 for 2.5 oz.
In English, this Purifying Cream Mask is a thick concoction designed to detox your skin to help clear the pores, the mind, and the soul. In reality, it does part of that.

I don't mean to sound ungrateful for precise directions on how to get the most effective results from a product, but it took me about 20 minutes to read the enclosed leaflet for this mask. Chanel even details a facial massage technique to be used before rinsing off the mask! That's nice of them, and sometimes it is calming to have ritual relaxation; however, in all it's just too much.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

They Weren't Kidding! I'm Addicted to Dior Addict Ultra-Gloss

Ultra-Gloss in 257 Pink Trench ($26.50 for 0.21 fl oz.)
Pizza is about to arrive, so I'm gonna make this short and sweet. My current favorite formula of lip gloss is Ultra-Gloss because it is buttery, smooth, and feel like it melts straight onto, not into, my lips at application. There is no scent as far as my allergy-stopped-up nose can detect, and I've not noticed one before. The brush applicator seems to always pull out just enough product for a full application; the packaging is pretty and just small enough for me to call it non-bulky; and the name of the color reminds me of the iconic Burberry Trench (Pink Trench).

e.l.f. Complexion Perfection Is Basically My Savior

($3.00 for 0.48 oz./13.5g)
You know, when you have oily skin, it's not usually the shininess in the light that really gets to you but the feeling oily, as if you haven't tried everything to keep the oil at bay. That's how I feel towards the end of the day, since it's winter now, and ALL the time during summer. In humidity, and I've clocked this, it takes about six minutes out of air conditioning, shade, or indoors to put a thin film on my forehead and chin. It's horrifically frustrating, and since I was using BareMinerals, oil is difficult to control carrying around Mineral Veil in loose powder with a relatively full-sized face brush and buffing and tapping while holding things in both hands and taking up counter space with my purse. God forbid there be no ladies' room around to duck in to. There was also no compact mirror in that scenario, btw!

This powder from e.l.f. (short for eyeslipsface) combats pretty much everything: sallowness, redness, uneven tone, signs of fatigue, and shine. To be fair (no pun intended) it is easier for all of these things to feature prominently on really fair skin, like mine, so this powder does have a very pale lean. However, it can be used in moderation to just powder over shine instead of leave pigment because any actual pigment this compact would leave is in heavy doses. Just beware of overdoing it and whiting yourself out. A few pats and it is translucent.

Serum Saturday: Estée Lauder Idealist Pore Minimizing Skin Refinisher

($46.50 for 1.0 fl oz.)
Oh man, all I want to do right now is tear into my newly arrived Vogue issue and screw the posting for the day, but alas, I have a Serum scheduled and have important things to say about this one. Maybe just a peek at one article....NO, BAD BLOGGER, bad bad blogger. Focus!

Today, we have a great serum to take a look at with Estee Lauder's Idealist. It's soft and smooth, absorbs easily and leaves your skin feeling very fresh. Here's what the brand's website describes (from

Friday, January 21, 2011

Will You Fall In Love With No.55? CHANEL 55 In Love Blush, That Is

($42.00 for 0.21 oz/6g)
I can't tiptoe around the fabulous quality of this blush, but I will try to give it a fair shake at a critical review. In Love is a warm coral with orange-yellow micro-shimmer. It contrasts beautifully on a warm toned face, and I think still neutral enough to flatter cool-toned gals like myself (the micro-shimmer helps). the powder is top quality and does not send clouds around with each brush stroke, so you get to use every speck of product. For the money, this blush is an investment I am happy with (beautiful color I want to wear often), but if you lean more towards lots of variety for less than a fortune, this is not for you.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Use A Light Hand with Rimmel London's Autumn Catwalk Blush and Highlighter

($4.99 for 0.15 oz/4.5g)
Rimmel's Autum Catwalk Blush and Highlighter is a tri-color compact with a light-medium shimmering pink, a semi-frost medium pink, and a matte hot pink that leans a little cool. The powder itself is finely milled and does blend smoothly, but getting too much product can make application a smidge chalky. Also, a lot of product comes loose with one sweep of the brush, dusting everything around it. Use a light hand, especially if you have fair/light skin and don't want a heavy cheek.

Compact Perfection: the e.l.f. Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder

($3.00 for 0.28 oz./8g)
This is a fantastic buy, seriously. A super flattering shade of pinky-coral blush and a well-pigmented and blendable bronzer (so that's good for fair lasses, too)! For me it is oh-so-easy to overdo bronzer, and this product isn't so much an exception as it is a workable option where there are few.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

BareMineral Flawless Definition Mascara Is Just That: Flawless

Ah, BareMinerals my old friend, you really never fail me, do you? This mascara ($18.00 for 0.33 oz) has a brush that reminds me a lot of CHANEL's Inimitable Intense, which makes both wands great for not stabbing my eye (a small plus). The formula does not smell profusely, and I'm appreciative for that since my eyes will water easily at something too strong near the socket.

Pixi Flawless & Poreless Primer Is Not For My Skin

($28.00 for 1.01 fl oz.)
I gave a good shot with this sample size; I used the whole thing. Mostly I used it a few months back when the humidity was still enough to break me out, so I just had the thought that this primer didn't feel quite right to me. Now, I used it once yesterday, and after a week of not a single new blemish, I have two right on my chin. I'm pretty sure it's this primer, so with combo/oily or sensitive skin I don't specifically recommend it.

Face of the Day 1.18.2011

Skin: Pixi Poreless and Flawless Primer, DiorSkin Nude Foundation; Cheeks: e.l.f. Contouring Blush and Bronzer; Eyes: Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen in Deep Plum, Pixi Champagne Glow Fairy Solo, Estee Lauder Wild Sable, BareMinerals Flawless Mascara

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Pick Up Pixi's Endless Silky Eye Pen When You Want A Bold Eye

No. 1 Black Noir (top) and No. 5 Deep Plum (bottom)
The first time I ever used one of these eyeliners, I nearly started to cry. Not out of joy, mind you, because it was a disaster, but now, I say these are exactly what I want in a liner.

That first sweep, I pressed too hard and there was an ENORMOUS black line all around my eye. I tried to blend it out--didn't work--I tried to wash it off--didn't work--I used a makeup remover--barely dented it--IT JUST WOULDN'T COME OFF! Be aware, beauty lovers, to use a light hand with these and really build the line you want to have on your face for 10+ hours because it ain't gonna budge.

A Look at Estée Lauder Signature Lipstick in Mocha

Mocha Lipstick with flash
Estée Lauder Signature Hydra Lustre Lipstick ($21.00) usually comes in gold ribbed tube which has (I'm guessing) about 0.14 oz, but I got this in a gift with purchase. In terms of formula, it's not the most moisturizing lipstick and pulls just a touch at my lips when I don't add a bit of balm underneath. Since I didn't purchase it specifically, I didn't expect the color to be a shade for me; I'm not that lucky.

Estée Lauder Pure Color Eyeshadow in Wild Sable

Estée Lauder Pure Color EyeShadow in 04 Wild Sable ($20 for 0.07 fl oz.)

I've had an up and down love-hate-disappointed-pleasantly surprised relationship with Estée Lauder over the past year or so. I was so sold on certain things, and it was the first counter I stopped by in my blossoming search for foundation six months ago. Alas, the very nice SA who recommended I try a full coverage before a sheer, lighter formula foundation not only didn't give me what I came in asking for but gave me the absolutely wrong color for my skin. I returned the foundation, the brush I got to go with it, and everything else I bought at the time of that purchase because I was so frustrated she hadn't listened to me at all (or given me the right color eyeliner I had asked for). From then on, I don't ask for a makeup touch-up when I go in because I really think the SAs WAY over-do the product, but I am very hesitant to buy a single thing, even when I like it.

This eyeshadow, however, I do not regret. It's a matte taupe, and it's literally perfect. The powder is very fine, well-pigmented, smooth and blends very well. I am simply sold on this. I will say that this light-medium brown will most likely not show up on darker skin tones as a depth color, but may just be the overall color you're looking for on your lid (for a base or a no-makeup look).

Monday, January 17, 2011

Burberry Lip Glow in Nude Beige: How beautiful you are!

AHHHHHHHHH, OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OHMYGOD! Burberry has a makeup line....oh my god. I really can't describe how excited I am about this line, and I think the products DELIVER on those expectations! Burberry Lip Glow ($27 for .2 fl oz.) is a creamy non-sticky formula power-packed with pigment and a luxurious rose scent. 

Can Milani Lip Color Really Compare to Dior "Serum de Rouge" - In appearance, YES!

I will tell you right now, I'm a a Dior whore--a practical one--but a whore for it nonetheless. However, once upon a CVS run I spotted these Milani HD Advanced Lip Colors, and the packaging made me do a double take. Is this my holy grail of drugstore beauty? Could I really only need to spend $7.99 for gorgeous lips as though I used a $32 product? The answer is a bit more muddled than you'd think.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Physicians Formula Organics (Tint, Powder, and Mascara)

Physicians Formula has a full line of Organic cosmetics that I just had to try. My requirements were as follows: 1) have a fair enough option in a tinted moisturizer, 2) don't be as expensive as my Dior HydraLife, and 3) be easy to find because I like to know what products to trust that I can purchase in case of loss on a trip or something. Wouldn't you know it--Physicians Formula fit every bill!

For starters the 100% Natural Origin Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15 is creamy and just thin enough to spread breezily across my skin. It's $9.95 for a 1.5 fl.oz tube and comes in four shades (Ivory-Fair, Fair-Light, Light-Natural, Natural-Tan). I'm still on the Ivory side of Ivory-Fair, so you may be starting to get an idea of how pale I am and how hard to find bases it is. On the left below is my clean bad-half before application; on the right one thin coat of Organic Wear.

Get CHANEL color for only 3 Bucks with a Minty Twist

I'm on the fence about CHANEL Glossimers, I really am. They don't really do much for me in terms of the feel of the overall product, but for Holiday 2010, Chanel kicked my pocketbook really hard with Pink Pulsion Glossimer. It's sooooo pretty to look at, and much to my dismay sooooo not the best color on me.

In a vain attempt a few months ago to make the Chanel Holiday 2010 look using only e.l.f. products (i.e. for less than the cost of just one piece of the Chanel collection) I ordered a huge haul of e.l.f., one product of which was Minty Lip Gloss in New York City. I was actually surprised by how much I liked the Minty Gloss because I liked it more than the Chanel (WHAT? Blaspheme, go wash your mouth!)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Very Quick Look at Dior Spring 2011

Dior Soft Pink Design All-In-One Artistry Palette ($58.00)
You can read Karen at's review of this palette here. Her review makes me want this one pretty badly, i.e. I'm drooling.

Why I Love Dior SO Much...

The Dior Diva Rewards Program is a great way to get more out of spending so much on cosmetics. For every dollar you spend on Dior cosmetics or fragrance, you get one point towards a reward. The levels are as follows from the Dior website:

Adorable Diva - 100 points
Receive deluxe travel sizes of Dior best sellers in an adorable mini Dior shopping bag.

Diva Deluxe - 250 points
Receive a full-size of Dior’s award-winning Diorshow Mascara in a couture-inspired pouch plus a deluxe travel mini.

Runway Diva - 500 points
Receive 2 full-size products and a travel size mini in a Dior runway pouch.

Fab Diva - 750 points
Receive 3 full-size Dior products and a mini Dior fragrance in a fabulous must-have travel pouch.

Divine Diva - 1000 points
Receive an exclusive Backstage case with divine Dior products and miniatures.

MAC Viva Glam Makes Giving Glamorous and Effortless

MAC "Tis Noble to Give Viva Glam" Lip Bag $36.00
Purchased from

Full Disclosure: These are the only MAC things I own. Period. I've never had a brush, or eyeshadow, or foundation...nothing MAC, but when I was doing one of my marathon beauty binges online one day, I read about the Viva Glam line. According to MAC''s Website, the MAC AIDS Fund is a big part of the company and a big piece of its heart, plus the entire purchase price of these cosmetics goes towards that AIDS Fund. I'm sold!

I finally bit the bullet and said "if I'm going to buy anything to test whether I like the brand, it better be worth it to somebody," and that it is, THAT IT IS. Apart from coming in its Tartan Tale pouch, the MAC "Tis Noble to Give Viva Glam" from the Tartan Tale collection consists of Viva Glam V Lipstick and Viva Glam V Lipglass. The Lipstick is a lustre finish and totally gorgeous.

Cleaning Up A Cluttered Look

In Cosmeticsland, a whole lot of people preach that "less is more" when most are actually putting more and more onto their faces and bodies hoping that "more will LOOK LIKE less." However, it next-to-never looks like less, and indeed, makes people look rather scary. I bring up this topic first in the whole of this blog because I started my makeup ritual many years ago with BareMinerals and never considered any other on-the-face products; I started wearing this makeup in college, loved it in Los Angeles weather (oily skin and all), but now, out of college and in the mid-west, I needed more fluid options.

It's snowing outside right now, and that makes me happy that I have found a few good liquid and cream foundations, a cream concealer, and most importantly, a finishing powder that  doesn't suck the moisture from my poor pores and doesn't cake up when oil sprouts at the end of my day. But this, alas, is not a strict product review...

To clean up your look and reboot your makeup application habits, choose ONE of TWO options: YOUR LIPS or YOUR EYES. Yes, your cheeks are important, but sometimes, when you have so much makeup to use or your just getting started and excited to look different, you just end up putting on too much unnecessary color--so which did you pick?!