Sunday, 6 July 2014

Quick Swatch: Formula X Photoelectric Nail Polish

two coats, in indoor light
Formula X Photoelectric is a blue-green foil with blue and purple microglitter that really catches the light. The bottle makes it look like a dark blue-purple but it's much lighter and greener on the nails!

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

L'Oreal Colour Riche Lipstick in 175 I Pink You're Cute: Review and Swatches


L'Oreal Colour Riche in 175 "I Pink You're Cute" is a glossy warm pink lipstick. It's very creamy and glossy, but the pigmentation is lacking. I found it impossible to get the colour to show on my lips, even over concealer or nude lip liner. Instead of the warm pink colour of the lipstick in the tube, I got a sheer layer of neon pink over my cool-toned lips. Trying to conceal out my natural lip colour didn't work either, because the lipstick is so creamy that it takes off anything you put under it. I really wanted to like this colour but it didn't work for me.

The lipstick has a floral, baby powderish scent and doesn't last long, due to the creaminess.

Dupes: literally any bright, sheer pink lipstick. Mac Coral Bliss looks sort of similar on lips, but is warmer and more coral than pink. Nars Niagara is a similar pink-coral colour, but more pigmented.


Monday, 16 June 2014

YSL Rouge Volupté Perle Lipstick in 114 Sparkling Fuschia: Review and Swatches

YSL Rouge Volupté Perle 114
YSL Rouge Volupté Perle in 114 Sparkling Fuschia is a shiny, semi-sheer watermelon pink lipstick with subtle sparkles. The consistency is very slippery, so it's easy to accidentally overapply, but it doesn't really migrate once it's on. The sparkles are large and obvious in the tube but not very noticeable on the lips. It's a neutral pink that pulls more cool-toned on me (as everything does), but there are warmer pink tones in it as well. It has a floral/fruit scent but no taste.

YSL lipsticks are just not my thing (in texture, smell, packaging -- this one is borrowed and not mine) but if you don't mind the fruit scent and the slipperiness, this is a nice semi-sheer, subtle pink lipstick for summer.

YSL Rouge Volupté Perle 114
YSL Rouge Volupté Perle (daylight)

MAC Relentlessly Red Retro Matte Lipstick: Review and Swatches

not quite red, actually?
MAC Relentlessly Red lipstick is a bright pinkish-red lipstick with a Retro Matte finish. It's very dry, very pigmented, and ultra matte. This formulation makes it wear well but it's not comfortable or moisturizing. It wears for hours and stains lips. There is a subtle vanilla scent but no taste.

I really like the look of this, as it's a true matte and not a "matte" with obvious sheen, like Mac Mattes and many other "matte" lipsticks. It has a flat, skinlike finish that makes the bold colour look more natural. The colour contains warm and cool tones; on me it's cooler and more fuschia-pink when worn lightly, and warmer with orangey/coral tones when built up.

Dupes: I would say that overall, this lipstick is very similar to Mac Ruby Woo in colour and texture, but Relentlessly Red is a couple of shades lighter, which I think makes it more flattering than Ruby Woo on paler complexions.

Mac Relentlessly Red Lipstick
Mac Relentlessly Red Lipstick

Monday, 19 May 2014

April and May Empties: John Frieda Shampoo, Nars Light Reflecting Loose Powder, Nars Stick Concealer


John Frieda Root Awakening Shampoo: This had a nice eucalyptus-mint scent. Not as hydrating as it claims, but a good cleansing shampoo.

John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Shampoo: This smelled like almonds and didn't really work as a shampoo (too hydrating to remove grease). I liked it on days I didn't want to totally strip my hair with a strong shampoo, but wanted something a bit more cleansing than washing with conditioner.

Nars Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder: This lasted for over a year (Feb 2013 to May 2014) even with daily use, and twice-daily use in the summer. So even though it's relatively pricey ($39 CAD when I bought it, and I think the price has gone up since then), it gives you excellent value for money. For the most part, I was really happy with this powder: the first one I ever tried that didn't catch on dry skin or look dull. It's totally invisible on the skin, even in flash photography, and it lasts ages if you use enough -- it held up through a few 16 hour days. My only minor complaint is that you really have to pile it on to get that kind of wear; on days I used a normal amount, I was fairly shiny after a few hours. I can't say I mind this though, as it is possible to wear more for total matteness. And as it wears, it does turn from matte to a radiant, glowy look; so I can't say it bothered me too much.

I would probably repurchase this, as it worked well and was good value for money, but I want to try a couple of other powders first.

Nars Concealer (Stick Concealer) in Chantilly: This was the first product I ever bought that actually matched my skin colour, so I did like it for a while. However, it's extremely dense and hard to blend out: you have to use your fingers to warm it up, and even then I could never get the edges to blend out fully. It's not horrible and it does cover things well, but I can't recommend it because it doesn't blend in. 

I would not repurchase this. I've replaced it with the liquid Nars concealer in Chantilly, which is still high coverage but is much easier to apply and blend.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Mac Naked Liner Lip Pencil: Review and Swatches

Left to right: Mac Naked Liner, Mac In Synch, Urban Decay Native, Urban Decay Naked
Left to right: Nars stick concealer in Chantilly, Mac Naked Liner, Mac In Synch, Urban Decay Native, Urban Decay Naked liner

Mac Naked Liner lip pencil is a light beige nude. It's a little bit darker than my NC10 skintone, but lighter than my natural lip colour. It's very similar to Mac In Synch lip liner, except In Synch is a bit brighter: more peach, less beige.

The pencil doesn't have an obvious scent or taste, and wears well. It can be blended in with chapstick for a sheerer look, or worn by itself it can be built up to an opaque, light skin-coloured beige. It does catch a bit on dry lips, which you can see in the photos, but from a normal distance it looks fine.

I highly recommend this pencil for pale girls looking to mute out their natural lip colour. Mac Boldly Bare lip liner and other "nude" liners (eg Urban Decay Naked) are much darker and more brown; on fair skin Mac Naked is a much more natural looking choice. It's also opaque enough to cover very pigmented lips.

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Mac Naked Liner lip pencil: Photos:
(Photos taken in natural sunlight)