Sunday, May 27, 2012

Maybelline The Falsies Black Drama Vs. The Falsies Flared

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Maybelline has arguably the best and most extensive line of mascaras in the market. Their line of "Volum'express" mascaras include "The Falsies" which has apparently become so popular there is now a few variations of the original formula "Black Drama" and "Flared" ...and possibly something to do with lace? although the Maybelline website and most of google denies its existence. Every time I go to the drugstore there seems to be a new variation out, so what's the difference? Honestly the difference isn't incredibly apparent so I've been using these interchangeably for a while to really get a feel for them.


Maybelline The Falsies Black Drama vs. The Falsies Flared

Consistency/ formulation:
All of The Falsies mascaras have the same consistency, its a formulation that I am not really thrilled with. When it's all fresh and new its a very wet gel-like consistency that glides on and coats your lashes fully and evenly. Sounds perfect to me, but only a few weeks later it dries out and the drier it gets the more clumpy and flakey it becomes. It becomes so hard to work with in such a short period of time that I would actually say it's not one of my favorite mascaras.

Length, Volume, Definition:
Length: These both seem to be equally lengthening. They also aren't incredibly lengthening, they give as much length as the average Volum'express mascara would, but since it's called "Falsies" I expected more. However if you want a real lengthening mascara my current favorite is actually Maybelline's Illegal Length. 
Volume: There is no difference in the volume the formula produces however, I would say that "Flared" gives a more thicker look to the lashes, I guess you can call that volume. The "Flared" wand tends to create more volume by sticking groupes of lashes together. That's one way to create volume but im not so much a fan of the "spider-lash" thing. 
Definition:  "Black drama" gives more definition to lashes, the wand combs through lashes and coats more of them, which I guess also creates volume as well, its just not as apparent as "Flared". Now you see how this gets confusing.


You really can only tell the difference close up
Also Its really hard to take a photo of your own eye.
Tends to give more definition. It also does seem to be slightly blacker as well.












Lashes tend to group together. Do they seem more flared??  I hate that one lash that points downward

Wand:
Black Drama: The wand on black drama is similar, if not the same as the original falsies. It's thin and curved, the spines grabs even the smallest lashes and coats them.

Maybelline The Falsies Black Drama


Flared: The wand is a lot thicker, its the same curved shape just fatter. The spines are more evenly spaced but also further apart. This is why I think it tends to make groups of lashes clump together.

Maybelline The Falsies Flared

Conclusion:
Overall it just comes down to preference. I have already stated that I do not care much for the formulation of any of The Falsies mascaras but between these two I prefer Black Drama. I like the smaller wand I think it makes application easier and I like my lashes to be defined. This is just my preference, in the end the real "winner" is up to you, everyone likes or needs something different in their mascara, which is why we end up with so may variations to choose from in the first place.  

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Best sunscreen to use under makeup

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It's about 90 degrees where I live today so I thought its the time to share my favorite everyday sunscreen, I have been using it on my body and face under my makeup every spring/summer for about two years now, its comfortable and lightweight, non-greasy, and looks great under makeup. 

We make a lot of excuses not to wear sunscreen daily: its greasy, it smells, its a hassle to apply, it stings when it melts into our eyes, ect, nonetheless it's still important. We already spend a lot of time and money on foundations, moisturizers, acne and wrinkle treatments trying to get perfect skin, so it makes no sense that we avoid applying sunscreen even though it prevents the sun from damaging our skin. 
I am fair skinned and live in Southern California where the sun is strong, so I tried tons of sunscreens out trying to find one that I can comfortably wear everyday and under makeup, this one is by far my favorite.


Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-touch Sunblock 
Why I like it for everyday:
The first sunblock that I found that claimed to be light weight and not greasy, I was skeptical but those claims turned out to be completely true and it is the reason I can tolerate using this everyday. It absorbs into the skin fast and has almost a powdery feel at first and It's very lightly scented and that scent fades quickly, nothing like that dreaded "sunblock smell" that is totally attractive.
It comes in a variety of SPF options but I always just buy the highest I can find, because... why not? It also has "helioplex" which is a completely made-up word that means it protects against a broad spectrum of UVA and UVB rays. Isn't that what all sunblocks do? ... I hope so.
 The packaging is light weight plastic and I have only seen the 3oz size, Only available in small sizes? That's completely unacceptable in America! I don't really mind because its more portable so I can easily reapply later in the day. This size lasts me a few weeks since I only need to apply it to exposed skin, usually face, arms, and chest. The packaging is very secure, I don't have to worry about it melting and getting all over my bag. It's a squeezy tube but it is sturdy, not flimsy plastic that'll get crushed. Also the opening seems to control the amount that comes out, you will never find excess in the lid or take off the cap and have melted sunblock come rushing out. 

Why I like it under makeup
The simple fact that it is not greasy and absorbs into the skin completely makes it great under makeup. I put this on, wait a minute or two for it to soak in completely, and then apply my makeup. I have never noticed a difference in how my makeup wears with this under it. Also my skin can be sensitive to heavier products (although, this is not heavy) like thick foundations or concealers, and this has never broken me out. This is dry to the touch, hence the name, it does not make the skin look or feel oily, so its formulation absolutely does not interfere with makeup application or wear. 

I also want to include a primer with sunscreen in it, since from time to time I wear stubborn foundations that absolutely need a primer.

MAC Prep+Prime Face Protect
If I have a foundation that does not wear well without a primer, instead of wearing sunscreen and a primer on my face, I use this one. Simply because it offers SPF 50, which is a considerable amount of protection for any makeup product. It works great but it's a bit expensive for only 1oz of product.
But does it have Helioplex??? We can't assume anything.

Monday, May 14, 2012

OPI's Pink Friday and Pink-nic In the Park: NOTD

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Today's nails come courtesy of OPI, after a week of warm weather and beautiful bright sunshine, these cool toned pinks just seemed appropriate. Its a color choice I wouldn't usually make but today was just the perfect opportunity to try out these OPI polishes that I've somehow never used before. "Pink-nic in the park" is from the Nicole by OPI's spring 2011 collection and "Pink Friday" is from Nicki Minaj OPI collection that came out in January. 
Maybe the sun was shinning a bit too brightly, the color is a bit washed out in my photos.
Nicole by OPI "Pick-nic In the Park" and OPI "Pink Friday"
The most true to color image I could get was in the shade of a bookcase.
Both colors are very vibrant, more vibrant than they appear on camera and in the bottle in real life. Pink Friday applies very vibrantly, it was actually very surprising to me that a cool light pink could be so bold and for a light color it is very pigmented. Pink-nic in the Park is on the other hand a sheer shimmering pink, but that is not to say that it isnt just as bold, its very very subtle shimmer making it almost a frost however what drew me to this is it is actually a pink/purple duo-chrome. Since Pink-nic in the Park is quite sheer Pink Friday is the perfect bold base color for it. 
I was a bit disappointed that Pink Friday applied really streaky, even after 3 coats, I don't know if it is OPI or just this color because the majority of OPI polishes I buy are from the Nicole or Sephora lines. Although it dried very quickly, which I always appreciate since I can not sit still or resist the urge to text for long periods of time. Pink-nic in the Park applied perfectly and covered the streaking, I love the brushes in the Nicole by OPI polishes, they never streak or apply globs of polish and they just make the painting so much faster and precise. 

A little sad story: This really is only a Nail of the Day since I discovered I got little dents in my nails when I got to school. An incident im blaming on my shitty top coat that tends to remain soft and rubbery for hours, a perfect example of why I should have tossed it out long ago. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Nars summer 2012 collection

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Last season I deemed Chanel's spring 2012 collection my favorite collection of the season for its beautifully sophisticated and fresh color palette. This season I am smitten with the Nars summer 2012 collection for its unexpected take on summer shades. 


Nars always has a fresh perspective when it comes to their collections, this season I appreciate that they steered away from the over-rated 'bronze goddess' summer look. There isn't a bronze in this entire collection and it is sooo refreshing, that being said the color palette still manages to give off a warm vibe. 

Ramatuelle Eyeshadow Trio
A stunning palette considering how incredibly simple it is, the shades are described as "silver, icy peach, and apricot", who would of thought of sparkling silver would work for summer? Not me. It would create a very light airy eye that would be perfect on a scorching summer day and it beautifully compliments any one of the other products in the collection. 
Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo
Consisting of the shades "Iridescent Orchid and Iridescent Regal Blue" this the edge of the collection, It seems as though Nars always throws in a vibrant color into their collections. Summer is the time we all relax, vacation, and party and fittingly these shades are bright and fun.
Liberte Blush 
A matte blush in a "Burnt Apricot" shade, far from the bronzed pink or nude pinks we see often in summer collections, this is a very obvious and deep shade. However the concept of it is brilliant, it gives the type of flush that would suggest one was in the sun all day, the tone is slightly red-orange which gives a very apparent warming effect to the skin. 
Calabria Shadow Pencil
This is a quite a deep shade of plum and slightly shimmery (last pencil in photo). This pencil is perfect for the season, dark enough to be used to define the lashline or outer eye but still not dark enough to be considered too harsh for summer. It also compliments the two eye palettes nicely. 



Vendanges Sheer Lipstick
The color of this lipstick might seem very harsh for summer, it is also a deep plummy red shade, however it is a sheer lipstick so it looks light and hydrating. 
Moscow Pure Matte Lipstick
Just as the title suggests its a strawberry red matte lipstick. If you are going for a red lip in summer, a lighter brighter red such as this, is the color that would be the most appropriate looking. A matte lipstick would seem heavy for the season but strawberry and summer go together so well that I can forgive the finish.
Never Say Never Velvet Matte Lip Pencil
Another Matte lip product in a deep pink rosy shade (middle pencil in photo). This is the more edgy lip color, it adds fun to the collection while still not seeming out of place since it compliments the eye palette beautifully. 
Buenos Ares Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil
This collection is a bit lip product heavy, but there is nothing heavy about this lip product. It is a very light pinkish nude shade, so light and glossy it's the ease of the collection. 
Trouville Nail Polish 
This light pink polish is the icing on the cake. Neutral enough not to clash with the collection but still provides enough color to add polish to any look. 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

New MAC collections: First Impressions

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Today I was for once not angry and bitter when the door bell rang and I had to get up to answer it, for the postman had brought me a gift, inside an unnecessarily large box was an order I placed online for quite a few MAC products I've been eagerly awaiting! I am excited to share my first impressions, photos, and swatches of products from the In Extra Dimension, Reel Sexy, and Too Supreme collections. 

The un-boxing 

Reel Sexy Collection 
I wanted more from this collection but the only thing I could get my hands on was a beautifully bold blush in "Magenta". This is a true magenta, a deep purplish mauve pink color, In fact if I hadn't seen this blush in person I would not have believed the color of images online to be true, for I have never seen a blush like it and naturally that convinced me that I had to have it. 
Its a Matt finish which I like for most of my blushes but It swatches true to color also, so its not for the faint of heart. I imagine for lighter skin tones it requiring a very gentile hand and a bit of bravery to pull off, but I never back down from a blush. 


Magenta blush and Blossom culture lipstick.

Too Supreme Collection
This was sort of an obscure collection for me, it got lost and forgotten in my mind behind all the great photos and swatches I've been seeing of the others. The display was hidden in a corner of the MAC store but it somehow caught my eye, luckily these new lipsticks and glosses have new packaging or I would of mistaken them for the permanent line. 
I got a Sheen supreme lipstick in a a shade called "Blossom Culture" it reminds me of a flower petal pink, natural but still lively. The product is more sheer and shiny than a normal lipstick, it feels quite hydrating it's formulation seems very similar to the Revlon Lip Butters. It has the same sweet candy scent that the MAC LipGlasses have but it's not nearly as sticky as the glosses. The lipstick has about the same amount of sheen a lipbalm would have, it is not "glossy" but the sheen is from the "pearl rich" formula, in the lipstick you can see the glimmering specks of pearl but on the lips it translates to beautiful radiance not chucks of glitter. 


Skinfinish Whisper of gilt, Eyeshadows Blue orbit and Modern Pewter. 

In Extra Dimension Collection 
This is the collection that most captivated me, I have a weakness for metallics.I honestly couldn't decide between all of the beautiful skinfinishes and eyeshadows, it was a bit overwhelming to choose. In the store there was only a few left that I could actually swatch, luckily there were many swatch photos available online. I had the most troubling choosing a skinfinish but for $29 I could only have one. All these products have a very odd consistency MAC describes as a "liquid powder formula" Its almost like a cream to powder but feels more slippery like a liquid I suppose, its different but I like it. 
The skin finish I ended up with is called "Whisper of Gilt" I am very excited because it is my first ever skinfinish. I somehow missed out on the skinfinish train in past collections, and I am not completely sure as to its uses just yet. Whisper of Gilt is a soft gold which I bought because I'd look best on my skin-tone, I assume the champagne colored "Superb" would not show up, and I swatched "Glorify" a beautiful bronze but just too deep for my coloring. These come in such large pans but I think Whisper of Gilt will make a beautiful highlight, but it is way too metallic and shimmery to be used all over the face, I mean I'd look like a golden alien .... or Goddess! (maybe that's what they were going for?)
The first eyeshadow I decided on is called "Modern Pewter" Its a natural toned metallic shade that I would typically wear however it is hard to even describe the color since it seems to change with the light. It has a lot of, well, Dimension, It's a bit gold, a little silver, and even green at times, confusing but still beautiful. 
Lastly I got the eye shadow in "Blue Orbit", its seems like a very vibrant blue in the pan, but on the skin it glimmers a light blue and in some light even appears a bit purple, but always shimmers with metallic silver flecks. 


Just a swipe and you can see they are quite pigmented.

Left to right, Sheen Supreme lipstick "Blossom Culture", top "Modern Pewter" eyeshadow, bottom "Blue Orbit" eyeshadow, top "Magenta" blush, bottom "Whisper of gilt" skinfinish.