Sunday, July 22, 2012

e.l.f. Mineral Infused Face Primer

Marching on to my next e.l.f. item...the Mineral Infused Face Primer. It came in a nice looking pump bottle, about 60g worth of product (I think, since I threw away the box and the bottle doesnt indicate the amount of its contents but it is about the same size as the elf Mist and Set spray), priced at RM28.

e.l.f. Mineral Infused Face Primer - a nice departure from elf's usual black packaging

The consistency is like any silicone-based primer so not really sure what it means by  "mineral infused". In any case, a little goes a long way as a small pump of product can be used to cover most of my face.

As it doesn't have SPF, it works with photography since it doesn't have that whitish SPF effect. Makeup stays on reasonably long as well, even in this humid weather, and I 'd say it is value for money. While the bottle is small, you don't need much product so it still works out as more bang for your buck anyway.

I have oily combination skin and the combo of using this primer, the elf HD Powder, and topped off with the elf makeup mist and spray, has so far helped keep my makeup reasonably intact till the end of the day. I don't really fancy an overly matte look and prefer the more natural glowy/dewy look so I actually don't mind it when I finally sweat through my makeup a little.

Quite like most of e.l.f. purchases so far. Can't wait to test out NyX next...


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Inglot blusher

I love Inglot. It's a more wallet-friendly MAC-esque line of makeup...from Poland, of all countries. Am not putting Poland down but it's not exactly known to be the fashion capital of the world so when I found out that's where Inglot comes from, I'm even more impressed. It is truly an amazing line of makeup that, IMHO, any professional makeup artist (or makeup hoarder like myself) would be proud to have in their collection.

I just got into Inglot this year, as with many other things makeup-related. There's only one store in the whole of Malaysia, and all the way at Sunway Pyramid, but it's worth the trip.(Update: I've since found out Inglot has opened up counters in Sogo and Midvalley!).

I'd started small. With a pink blush. And two eyeshadows. Then on a subsequent trip I added on another blush and more eyeshadows and a lipstick. But for the sake of this post, I'll stick to the blushers.

At first blush: The top one in pink popped my Inglot cherry (ok, that sounded wrong but whatever), and the second one in a more natural tone was my second Inglot blusher in the AMC variant.
I've noticed that I've actually hit pan with the first blusher (in a variant that's just called Face Blush) that I purchased a few months ago. It's a pink tone that adds a refreshing pop of colour to my cheeks and I use it almost every day at work, brushing it on with my Body Shop travel blush brush. It was 2.5g of product and for the life of me, I cant find the shade's name or code and I've long thrown the box away. Whatever code that may have been on the back could have faded away since.

Anyway when I first saw the pink, I thought it was too bright but when the store's MUA put it on me, it was perfectly fine. So...being the blush girl that I am, I've been faithfully wearing this and since I got my Benefit Sugarbomb, I wear the Sugarbomb over it like a highlighter. I realised that I love this pink blusher because it actually has a subtle sheen to it, lending cheeks a more natural, healthy flush as opposed to a matte blusher.

My second trip got me the more natural looking AMC blush in No 64. I've only worn this like three times so far. The instore MUA explained that the AMC variant is supposedly for more sensitive skin. I just liked the natural tone. I used it like a bronzer but then it has a subtle peachy undertone that makes it work as a natural-looking blusher on its own. Am going to be using this a lot more soon, what with the first one hitting pan already.
First swatch on the left is the pink Face Blush followed by the AMC blush in number 64.
I foresee more trips to Inglot in the not-so-distant future.I had to stop myself this month as I'd purchased a  few NyX more spending for now!

e.l.f. High Definition (HD) Powder

I am indeed on a roll...a few posts in one day to make up for a long absence.

Onward bound! Yes, following my e.l.f. haul about a month ago, I've also been testing the much talked-about-online e.l.f. HD face powder. It's been touted as a dupe for expensive HD powders like Makeup Forever's. I haven't the chance to try out expensive HD powders, in fact this e.l.f. HD powder is my first HD powder of any kind, so I won't really have a baseline to compare to.

Needless to say, I was pretty psyched to try out this out. I got it in translucent (also a first for me since I usually generally get loose powder in medium beige).

Again I don't know why the pic won't go landscape. Anyway here's e.l.f. HD powder, got it for RM28
 Translucent powder used to always make me suspicious...of how it will look on my skin. I know... I sound like a real makeup neophyte..but back when all I owned makeup-wise were colored lip balm and compact powder, I used to think that white stuff is gonna stay white on my face.

Anyway, I grew up. And grew adventurous. And started to earn my own dough. So product swatching became sort of a past time for lil ol me. And I discovered that that white stuff don't necessarily stay white on the skin :P

Regardless I still felt that twinge of apprehension when I first opened the lid of my e.l.f. HD powder. I mean, it looked sooo white! With a bit of what looked like shimmer.  Anyway, test it I did. I used the puff it came with and the powder came out from those sieve-like holes like any usual loose powder would. The thing was...when I rolled the powder puff over my face, the powder stayed with that mesh-like design on top of my skin! That's a first for me. I had to pat, roll and swipe it about a bit to get it settled properly. I probably should use a powder brush but I havent gotten around to that yet.

Anyway, the powder is fine enough. And yes, the whiteness does blend out into the skin after a while. There's just this papery dryness to the powder that I can't quite describe. I think it does soak up any oils I might have on my face but then it's so dry that I end up looking a tad powdery. Which I fix with my e.l.f. mist and set spray anyhow.

I havent tested how I'd look in photos with it yet too. Although it has that certain kind of dryness to it, I quite like it as long as I set it with a setting spray to get rid of that powdery look.

I have indeed become quite the elfette :)

How to do a happy coral manicure :) A quick, mini nail tutorial...

When you've had a long long week, and needed something to chill out, doing your own manicure might not always be on most people's chill list. For me, it is. Don't ask me why or how but over the years with all kinds of stress coming in and out of my life, doing my nails has become somewhat a relaxant for me (in lieu of literally taking chill pills :P ). I have also become a nail polish hoarder along the way...and this is way before I started on the makeup hoarding.

I started with the safe pink and nude variety and over the years, the colour choices have intensified along with the varieties now available in the market. Like with my makeup choices, am not fussed about branding and pricing with my nail product choices - the cheaper with reasonable quality, the better, although of course if I could afford it all the time, OPI is the bomb, let's face it.

There is something stultifyingly soothing when stroking on color onto my nails. I let go of all my other worries and concentrate on getting just the right stroke of color on that little space on my fingers (or toes).

So...after a long week with no time to do my nails last weekend, this is what I just got up to today...

A pop of coral on my fingertips! That's a page of Glamour mag in the background...btw, I love the model's makeup there too, especially the shading...but I digress...
Coral! As early as a year ago you won't catch me going around with all kinds of colour on my nails but this year, I've been on this color bandwagon.

I don't claim to be a nail expert but I do love how doing my nails make me feel exponentially better somehow. I don't use fancy stuff really, as you can see below:

Rimmel 5-in-1 Base and Topcoat, Sally Hansen polish remover, J&J's baby bedtime oil, and coral nailpolish from SaSa - that's all, folks :P
I start with getting rid of my old nail polish color with good 'ol Sally Hansen nail polish remover. A medium-sized bottle lasts me quite some time and the formula is kind to nails so it's good to get yourself one of these. Then I trim and file my nails as I need. Sometimes nails need a little buffing so it has a smoother and cleaner surface to work on, so I do that too (when am not too lazy).

Next apply the basecoat. The Rimmel 5-in-1 base and topcoat has seen me through countless nail polish looks till it's more than halfway through now. It's probably hardly more than RM10 at either Guardian's or Watsons and it works really well for lazy (and cheap) people like me. I mean, just one bottle to do like five things? Basecoat, topcoat, strengthens, smoothens, shines...yeah.

Then it's the first layer of nailpolish color. I got this coral nail polish from SaSa for like RM6.90...I have no idea what brand it is because the symbol on the bottle looks like a Chinese character but I do know the color is labelled as No 29 at the base of the bottle :P It truly is a lovely coral color and the quality is not bad at all since the first coat of color was already reasonably intense. I always do two coats, so the second coat came on after the first coat was dry. Then it's back to Rimmel to do the topcoat.

And why J&J baby bedtime oil you may ask? Firstly I like the soft lavender smell of this purple- bottled variant. Smells yummy. And in the nail context, I apply the oil onto my nails and cuticles to speed up the nail-drying process and also to moisturize the nails and cuticles. Learnt that trick from another girly girlfriend. Then leave nails to dry!

And that's all, folks! Happy coral manicure :)

e.l.f. Makeup Mist and Set spray

And yes, after some delay, am following up on my e.l.f. trail of products. This too I love...

e.l.f. Make-up Mist & Set spray: Says it has Aloe, Green Tea, Cucumber and Vits A,C & E...I say it's a steal and it works!
I always have this problem of looking cakey after powder and then getting my makeup fading off courtesy of my oily combination skin. I've been eyeing setting sprays at Sephora but most are rather pricey (starts from RM80 above) so when I saw this available at the local online reseller's for...*drumroll*...RM16, no doubt I was adding this into the online shopping cart.

When it did arrive with the rest of my e.l.f. haul, it is rather small at 60ml, but it's the perfect size to tote around and for something that works for such a steal, absolutely no regrets.

It sets the makeup, making it look more natural and less powdery, and and and it actually does help to make makeup stay on for longer. I did expect the former but when I discovered the latter, I was indeed ecstatic. Am planning to repurchase this so I can leave one in the office too. Loving it!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

e.l.f. Essential Brightening Eye Color (Brownstone)

I'd added on the e.l.f. Essential Brightening Eye Color in Brownstone out of curiosity when placing my first ever order of e.l.f. goodies. It was only RM7 so truth be told, I wasn't expecting anything too stellar.

I dont know why this pic wont go landscape though the original file was but anyway here's e.l.f. Essential Brightening Eye Color in Brownstone

The packaging does reflect the price point, plasticky but does the job. I chose Brownstone because it looked like it has neutrals that can be mixed and matched with my other eyeshadows and I did experiment with it.
Did a quick smokey eye with all the colors. Was also wearing the elf Duo Blush and Bronzing powder.
I've since tried it with my other shadows like Inglot and Stage. I quite like the taupe-ish looking brown as its perfect for blending out the outer edges of the eyes for any look. I foresee I'll be using that color the most out of the quad, followed by the slightly shimmery highlighter shade.

The other two colors are so so. The darkest one, which is basically black, is fallout city though. It had the crumbliest texture among the four. I'll most likely have to find another similarly dark matte shadow that doesn't crumble as much as am not good at dealing with fallout.

Anyway, it was RM7 and in the US of A, it's quoted as being 1USD, so don't expect too much out of it.

Monday, July 2, 2012

ELF (or is it e.l.f.) Contouring Blush and Bronzing Powder

As you might be able to tell from previous post, I've been really excited about my ELF haul. Most of all, I was super excited about the the Duo Contouring Blush and Bronzing Powder.

ELF Duo Contouring Blush and Bronzing Powder: Sturdy black plastic casing, arrived with some minor fallout as can be seen here

When I first saw this duo blush and bronzing powder, I thought how similar it is to the Nars duo bronzing powder. I've been eyeing the Nars duo for a while but the moment I saw this powder and found it on a local reseller's site, I placed an order for it. It's way cheaper so I thought why not. I only knew later when You-tubing that it is indeed well-known as a dupe for that same Nars duo.

What I can say is, if you're into duo bronzing and blush powders, you should get this. I've been using it every day for the past few days and loving it. I never really tried shading before and first kickstarted my curiosity with  Korean Chamildo shading powder, which I blogged about previously.

While that first purchase of mine is still a worthwhile buy, I'd say if I got this Elf one first I wont need to get any other bronzer duo for a while.
A closer look at the duo powder: The blush is a peachy pink with subtle gold shimmer while the bronzer is a matte brown
With this, I am now a convert to the shading and blushing contingent. The bronzer is a matte medium brown and I noticed the peachy pink blush has a slight gold shimmer to it. Lovely!

The first swipe is the blush whilst the second swipe is the bronzer.; both swipes done on the side of hand. I got fascinated by the blush powder's pretty gold touch; not too much but just nice for a healthy sheen, in my opinion.

For a person new to the shading game, this is perfect for practice (quality and price wise) and from what I gather online, seasoned makeup enthusiasts are loving this too.

While I quite like this duo, I noticed when I dip my brush into the blusher, it tends to be a bit powdery compared to the bronzer. It's not a big deal though and still works and judging from the shade, this duo would work well on most skin types.

I usually sweep my Benefit Sugarbomb blusher over to intensify the flushed look and to highlight a bit more...and yes, loving it!