Friday, July 25, 2008

product test drive at the mall.....Lancome Magnifique and Estee Lauder Sensuous

i went for a little scented indulgence at my local Dillard's. though my main priority was to pay my bill, i also wanted to smell two new scents that i'd been keeping my eye on: Lancome's Magnifique and Estee Lauder's Sensuous. i predicted that i would like Sensuous the most.

Magnifique was a wonderful surprise to my nose. though i didn't love it immediately, i was pleasantly intrigued. it began to unfold on my skin as this warm, woody rose scent. and i don't attach this word to many fragrances, but i can use it here: it's sophisticated. not sophisticated like the fragrance ages you, but that it's so classy and well done. the longer i wear it, the more impressed i am. this is a perfect special occasion scent, perfect for evening. i am glad that it's missing that aldehyde note that so many fragrances out there have-i feel like it can sometimes cloud the fragrance, but this is not powdery. the notes are: nagarmota essential oil, saffron essence, cumin, Bulgarian rose essence, Mai de Grasse rose absolute, jasmine, Australian sandalwood essence and a vetiver note. this is a little black dress scent, and i can't wait to have it! this is what i wish Chanel 5 smelled like, but the aldehydes always turn me off. if you try it, do yourself a favor and put it on your skin. give it a few minutes to warm up, and you'll be glad you did.

Estee Lauder Sensuous didn't impress me as much. it's notes are: ghost lily accord, magnolia, jasmine petals, molten woods, amber, sandalwood, black pepper, juicy mandarin pulp and honey. though it smells like Bronze Goddess's redneck cousin, though by looking at the notes, they only share magnolia and sandalwood. it's sweet, almost overdone, and i keep waiting for the wood notes to come out, but the magnolia keeps stifling it. it doesn't seamlessly blend for me. it's as though the various notes are fighting each other for stage time.

go give these two newbies a whiff and see if you have found a new fragrance for yourself....

product crush...Bare Escentuals eyeshadows and brushes

my makeup personality refuses to be placed into any certain stereotype. some days, i'm doing the "sheer, fresh and pretty" thing, some days i'm feeling a little rock 'n roll, some days i'm even a little costumey. i adore dark eyes and a pale mouth, and i'm a sucker for glitter.

i used to think that Bare Escentuals didn't really fit my makeup personality. i thought that they were geared towards a sheer, more natural look.

i've been looking at it recently, and i think we might become friends. i'm not in love with the entire brand, but their eyeshadows and brushes are intriguing.

though they don't have the range of bolder colors that Urban Decay does, they do have more than just neutrals. they have some lovely deep shades and lots of shimmer. plus, all of their shadows are wet/dry. they also have some excellent kits that put shades together for you, and the brushes that come in the kits are amazing.

the individual shadows are $13.00, but it's the eyeshadow kits that are going to be painful ($32.00). tell yourself that the brush is worth it and the colors are fabulous. they often include brushes and eyeshadows in the kits that are not sold individually.

i'm excited about the release of their "rocker eye" kit, which is going to create that shimmery, smokey eye look that i crave!

application with this entire line is pretty messy. after all, it's loose powder. i generally have to do my face before getting dressed if i'm wearing BE.

do you love Bare Escentuals? any faves?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

product crush....Cargo One Base

finding a good concealer can be difficult. mainly, because a lot of concealers are thick and a little dry, and a lot of the things we'd like to conceal are already dry (like blemishes we are trying to clear up!).

the wrong concealer can actually draw attention to what we are trying to hide.

i love Cargo One-Base. it's a liquid that doubles as a foundation or a concealer. since i have a healthy relationship with Urban Decay's Surreal Skin as my foundation, i needed a good concealer, and this one totally makes the grade. however, in a pinch, it can be a foundation, and that's good to know.

it's consistency is thinner than what i'm used to in a concealer, but the coverage is just as good. because it's thinner, it blends very easily into the skin. i can hide blemishes and my under-eye circles with this, and it doesn't look cakey, chalky, or un-skin-like. basically, it disappears, and you can't ask for better than that!

as a sidenote, you can use concealer on more places than just blemishes and under-eye circles. putting a little concealer on each side of your nose and around your mouth will totally brightens your face. these are areas that are most prone to discoloration and darkness, and when you want to canvas out your face (making it all one color and preparing it for your makeup), a lot of people forget these areas. it will really make a difference for a finished look!

hair envy revisited...the Pantene Volume collection commercial

ah, here we go. i want her hair. i NEED her hair. it's perfection.

Monday, July 21, 2008

product crush.....Too Faced Eyeshadow Duos in Totally Toasted

marketing goes a long way in cosmetics. brands have an intent to draw a certain crowd, and the marketing makes that happen.

for instance, Too-Faced has a vintage-yet-juvenile feel. it turns some people off, while the brand does have some redeeming products. they have glitter and shimmer, things that plump, and some interesting color choices.

i recently discovered that they have something that every girl ought to have in her arsenal. their Eyeshadow Duo in "Totally Toasted" is a go-to, foolproof neutral that any girl can pull off. it's the perfect eye look for someone who likes a less dramatic look, or if you want to focus on your mouth instead of your eyes. i discovered it on a co-worker who was rocking a red pout, but her eyes were perfect with the look. defined, but not overpowering. it's a combo of a bronze shimmer shadow, and a champagne shimmer (off-white) shadow. that champagne shadow goes with a billion other things that you probably already own.

you've got to get your hands on this stuff!

product test drive.....Benefit B Spot

if you know me at all, you know that if you cut me, i bleed perfume. the release of a new fragrance is completely enthralling to me.

i had high hopes for Benefit's B Spot. it advertises itself as being seductive...a fragrance to be put on certain spots of the body (b spots).

to my nose, it's not the least bit sexy. it's notes of mango, freesia, peony, sandalwood, and amber don't do a thing for me. usually adding sandalwood and amber to anything make it a little more suggestive, but those notes are barely noticeable in this fragrance. mainly, i smell an overload of freesia.

it's not a scrubber, but it is a disappointment. it's immature and easily overdosed, surrounding you with shrill giggles. i hope i don't run into anyone who actually puts this juice on all those "b-spots". i'll have to politely walk away coughing!

it smells a bit like hair gel to me....not unpleasant, but not something i want my entire body to smell like. i much prefer their first fragrance, Maybe Baby, to this.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

product crush....Nanette Lepore fragrances

for reasons i'll choose not to explain, i was dead set on hating any of Nanette Lepore's fragrances before i ever set eyes on them. and, at first sniff, i didn't love them either.

Her signature scent, simply called "Nanette Lepore", has notes of Moonstone Rose, White Peach, White Cranberry Juices, Magenta Nectar, Black Currant, Orange Jasmine, Persian Lime Juice, Velvet Violet, Amber, and Indian Sandalwood. i swore it would be too "girly" for me, but it's growing on me. it's light and feminine, and although it really has no feisty attitude that i like in a fragrance, it's simple and pretty.

"Shanghai Butterfly" lured me in before NL did. it is so close to Encanto Shine (which i like) that it's unnerving. it has notes of Lemon Slice, Mandarin, Snow Apple, Carnation, Lily of the Valley, Gardenia, Poet's Jasmine, Whisper Rose, Oriental Leaves, Green Cedar, Siberian Musk, Sandalwood. it's a clean, fruity smell that doesn't have the pretty whisper of NL, but more of a fun-loving, almost sporty smell. i don't feel like the name suits the juice, but the juice is good, so we'll leave it alone.

both of these are pretty affordable, with the smallest bottles being just $38.00. they'd make excellent daytime warm-weather scents!

become a saucy Tarte!

have you tried Tarte?

Tarte is probably best known for their groundbreaking cheekstain. it was on the cheeks of all the A-listers for awhile. and although i was eager to try it, i had been warned that the formula (which looks like an enormous chapstick) would set into larger pores and make an oily-skinned girl look like she had polka dots on her cheeks. i had to try it for myself!

i have tried applying "flush" in several ways. first, you can just make a big circle on each cheek and blend with your fingers, or you can use a large brush (i like to use a foundation brush) to swipe the top of the product and apply to the cheeks. i do have to use this stuff sparingly, because it has a balm consistency and could counteract the shine that i'm always trying to get rid of. i do love the color that looks like you glow from within. and, it didn't make little polka dots all over my cheeks.

Tarte also has some fun new eyeshadow options called "Lock n Roll Crease Eyeshadow Duo". it's a wand with liquid eye-shadow on one end and loose eyeshadow on the other. i tried "gunmetal", a glittery silver shade. the liquid formula goes on decently, but i'm a big fan of the loose shadow on the other side. i actually take the rollerball off and stick a brush into the tube. the loose shadow has a deeper shade and more shimmer.

another product that i really like is their "Double Dose Berry Boost and Gloss". the color and shine are separated in the tube, then magically come together when you squeeze. it's the perfect combo of shine and color, and it doesn't taste horrible. it's a little painful to pay $21.00 for a lipgloss, though (unless it's Chanel Glossimer).

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

product toss......Cargo Texas Lash

my current quest is to find a mascara to rave about that my part-time job actually sells. sadly, that doesn't include my favorite, Diorshow Blackout. if i'm telling a customer about what mascara i've used and liked, i need to be able to sell it to them!

Cargo's Texas Lash isn't the first to use the concept of forming tubes around the lashes, thus creating visual volume. Too-Faced Lash Injection does the same thing.

i don't mind the brush-it's fat and has a lot of bristles, much like my favorite. however, the formula gets a little clumpy on my lashes the more you apply (i'm a lash builder...i like to keep recoating!). it also flakes a bit.

the worst part is the getting the stuff OFF your lashes. even if you saturate with waterproof remover and swipe down, you still get little black pieces all over your face. you can actually see portions of the little lash-tubes. my friend Beauty Queen swears that it is also taking real lashes with it, and i don't want to take that risk!

here are a couple of pics of my experience with Texas Lash...

this one isn't a keeper in my book. next!

Monday, July 14, 2008

hair envy....pantene never made me look this good!

it wouldn't matter if i dumped a gallon of Pantene on my head, it would never look like Maria Menounos' hair. I couldn't find the latest commercial, where her hair is out of control gorgeous, but her hair is pretty impressive in this one, too. i have total hair envy!!!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

product lust.........Too Faced Lip Injection (OUCH)

ready to suffer for beauty? slather your lips with Too Faced Lip Injection!

in case you don't know, what makes most lip plumpers work is that they contain a variety of chemicals that irritate your lips on purpose, thus causing them to become more flushed and a bit swollen. they range from uncomfortable to painful, and this one has been the most painful that i've tried.

..and i still don't hate it. yes, i am insane.

you notice the tingling immediately. from there, it escalates and for the next 5-10 minutes and it's hard to concentrate on anything but your aching lips. end result? a shiny, full pout, if you can handle it that long. the pain does go away, i promise!

it comes in clear and four nice colors that work well alone or compliment stain or lipstick nicely.

i plan on trying Lip Injection Extreme (which is a terrifying step up from plain old Lip Injection!!) very soon. i have to mentally prepare myself for the inevitable anguish..........

product lust.......Urban Decay Loose Pigments

one of the best things about my part time job is that i get to sample out all kinds of goodies, thus developing all kinds of crushes.

Urban Decay continues to woo me with their colors and glitter.

Urban Decay Loose Pigments are vibrant and sparkly, and i have a HUGE crush on "Rockstar", which is (dark purple in black base w/ silver/purple micro glitter per actually, i want them all except "Shattered"(bright, greenish blue) and "Goddess"(midnight blue w/ electric blue micro glitter).

the container comes with a brush, which i find bulky. i'd be more likely to put a small brush into the bottle or tap some out into a lid or onto a tissue and use an eyeliner brush from there. i am discovering that my eyeliner brush can do a lot more than line eyes, but that's a different blog.

i'm also flirting with their 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Rock Star (dark purple). it goes on creamy and stays like a dream.

tried these?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

urban decay primer potion rocks my world again!!!

just when i thought i couldn't heart Urban Decay Primer Potion any more.....i discover that it multitasks.

i wouldn't lie to you.

think about it. on your eyes, it keeps oil at bay and makes your product stick. so, logically, there are other places on your face that could use that kind of staying power.

like your lips! yes, put UDPP as a lip base and your bold/bright lipsticks stay a lot longer. i admit that i got that idea from somebody else, but this next one is all mine. i may be making history right here on this blog, because....

it works as an awesome mattifier! i put a thin layer on my t-zone and i stayed shine free! i purposely didn't use much because it's color is lighter than my skin tone and i didn't want to have a big, bright T in the middle of my face. but it virtually disappeared and did an awesome job of keeping my shine away for hours.

try these tricks and see if they impress you as much as they did me!

product lust....wicked lovely by smashbox

i'm so excited for all the fall makeup collections...this one caught my eye at Ulta, and i cannot wait to get my hands on it!

smashbox's Wicked Lovely collection combines two of my favorite looks-dark eyes and pale mouth. i like almost every piece...

the first thing that drew me in was the adorable packaging, covered in scrolly black stencil. the lip glosses have a black leather tassle on top. speaking of the lip glosses, i think i have to have it in "Sweet", which is a sheer apricot. i didn't get to see "Sultry" in person, but it's a black cherry.

the eye makeup for this collection is mostly deep and shimmery, which doesn't hurt my feelings much. the cream liner/loose shimmer product has three stripes of liner on one side of the jar and the bottom flips open for some shimmer in a gunmetal gray color. you can create a ton of looks with just this one pot of product! plus, their cream liner is a bit impressive anyway.

the blush is the perfect deep flush. it's a soft warm pink called "Charm". i put some on the back of my hand, and it seemed to be matte.

what do you think of this collection? check the whole collection out at

Sunday, July 6, 2008

product lust......Sally Girl polishes!

so many nail polishes, so little time.

when i go to choose a polish, there are certain brands i normally go to (OPI, Essie, etc). and, i usually find more than one that i want. however, it can hurt your wallet pretty quickly dropping 6-8 bucks per bottle just because you want a fun color for the month of july, or because you want to hop on the latest trend wagon.

while browsing at my local Sally Beauty Supply today, i stumbled across a display of tiny bottles by the register. They are called Sally Girl, and they are the perfect way to get your new polish color fix! at just $.99 a pop, you can stock up and try as many as your heart desires. they have 56 fun shades.

it gave me the courage to break out of my mold and try a tangerine metallic called "Hottie"...and i love it! they have a great selection of colors, both classic and trendy, bright, light and dark. there's something for everyone in this collection, and it's totally portable!

check it out!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

like Bourjois?

if you are a Bourjois fan, something is amiss.

i can say for certain that they are pulling out of Sephora at JCPenney. products are now discounted at 30% off. i also noticed that their products are on sale at

their lip stain is worth it. i'm stocking up!!

product test drive....philosophy purity made simple high foaming daily cleanser

i'm working on switching up my skincare. i may gravitate towards using 2 different cleansers-one for morning, and a different one for night.

i've been using Purity Made Simple High Foaming Daily Cleanser by Philosophy. during this test run, it's been my morning cleanser. i love how light it is, and how my skin feels afterwards-soft and clean, not tight and dry like some cleansers can be. it also smells really nice.

it's efficient, because you cover cleansing and toning in one step. this product has it all covered! i'm used to clinique's 3 step program, but this will save some time. the pump also makes it very convenient to dispense at your bathroom counter or even in the shower. it foams everything up for you-a lazy gal's dream!

so far, no buyer's remorse about this product. i highly recommend it!