Friday, July 31, 2009

MAC Love That Look Swatches and Review Part II








NOTE: Lotusland, Top Hat and Mink & Sable are not part of the current Starflash release.

As I have stated in my previous entry, MAC Love That Look Initial Swatches and Review, I really like the Starflash formula as it glides silky and dreamlike on the skin, and unlike some formulas like lustre, it doesn't tug on the lids or create too-sheer washes. I've viewed and played with all colors, so here are my thoughts on them. The swatches below were taken without base under direct sunlight, so you can really see how the colors look like under natural light.

(Review and swatches after the jump)











Dreammaker is a lovely frosty yellow gold that would be great as either a wash color, highlighter on the browbone or the inner corners. I didn't get it as I have several near-dupes for this. It is a lovely color that could be a staple in every makeup kit, I believe.

Grand Entrance is a frosty neutral peach. This one is REALLY frosty, so if you don't like shimmer, skip this one. I've had it since last year, and I like to use it as an inner lid color to brighten up my eyes, paired with a darker matte crease or outer V color to balance the frostiness.

Ego is a light yellow pink that I got. This would be great to highlight for purples and pinks, or as a wash. I am such a girly-girl, so of course I've got to get Ego.

Fashion Groupie is a light blue violet that I said in the first review is similar to Satellite Dreams. This would be good to pair with purples, pinks, blues, even yellows or golds.

Unbasic White is a bright off-white that would be great as a highlighter. Such a bright color can't make me think of any use for this except to highlight. I can see this as an amazing highlighter for the tearducts to make the eyes look and appear brighter, fresher and more rested.

Glamour Check! is one of my favorite colors from this collection. It is a frosty reddish brown that reminds me of a lighter version of Twinks. Pretty for a fun neutral eye look.

One-Off is a mid-tone green with silver pearl, and one look at it reminded me of my limited edition Guacamole eyeshadow, so I skipped this. Lovely color, though, and if you like greens like me, go get this.

Rated "R" is a bright yellow green that is similar to Sharp from the Tempting quad of Cult of Cherry collection. I used it in THIS LOOK, and it reminded me of my Lucky Green eyeshadow. I used Greenstroke paint pot underneath, though, so the look might be a bit different without Greenstroke.

Style Snob is a dirty pink brown with gold pearl that is absolutely gorgeous. This is my most favorite of the bunch. This would be great as a wash or as a subtle crease color, and to blend gradient colors. This is similar to Twillery from the Inventive Eyes quad, and it also reminds me of Warming Trend from the Cool Heat collection, but they are not entirely dupes of each other.


Twillery and Warming Trend

Smoke & Diamonds, again, is the star of this collection. It is a frosty dirty taupe that I've had since last year, but I don't use it. I guess the reason is that it didn't look too good without a grey cream base underneath. I will get a grey eye primer and will post a look using this. I bet this would look fantastic once the color truly pops on my lid.

Strike A Pose - this caught my eye at the MAC store so I had to have it. It is a beautiful dirty/deep blue green that would be amazing as a summer color. I don't have a MAC eyeshadow that looks similar to this, so I know this would not languish in my 15-pan palette.

Fashion is a light grey green with gold pearl that I didn't really pay much attention to, but if I come back to the counter and see that this would make a great lid color, I would totally get this as well.

As always, the Pearlglide liners glide like butter, and the colors are lovely. Molasses is a dirty mid-tone brown with brown glitter that I am planning to get for those neutral looks that I always sport. Check my previous review for more swatches of these Pearlglides.

Lancôme Friends and Family Discount Honored at Lancôme Boutiques



Calling all beauty junkies in New York, New Jersey, California and Texas! Lancôme boutiques are offering you an exclusive Friends & Family discount. Enjoy 20% off everything you love at the Lancôme boutiques. This is a great opportunity to stock up on your favorite products or try something new, such as the limited-edition fall collection Declaring Indigo. Check out the photos below of some Lancôme classics (Dual Finish and Bi-facil) and the new cult-favorite nail polish from the fall collection, Le Vernis Indigo Paris.







How to get the discount: Print this .PDF file of the Lancome Friends and Family Discount flyer, and bring it with you to one of the boutiques between 8/01/09 – 8/08/09. Go to www.lancomeboutique.com for a location near you.

NOTE: This discount is not valid at any other Lancôme locations, counters or lancome-usa.com.

The 10 Best Hair Dryers

TotalBeauty.com
The 10 Best Hair Dryers

Should you spend $200 on a blow dryer? Or will a $20 model do the trick? Find out here!


Hair dryers range in price from bargain models from brands like Conair to splurges from brands like Chi. But which ones really offer the best results? The answer may not be what you think. Check out the best of the best here.

See hair dryers

No. 10: Vidal Sassoon VS547 1875 Watt Professional Full-Size Ionic Dryer, $19.99

TotalBeauty.com average reader rating: 7.8*


"I've never used a dryer that left my hair softer than this -- simple as that ..."

No. 9: TIGI Bed Head 1875W Active Ionic Dryer, $69.95

TotalBeauty.com average reader rating: 8.4*


"I have wavy/kinky hair so the comb attachment saves me from having to straighten my hair after I blow dry it ..."

No. 8: Vidal Sassoon VS783 1875 Watt Ionic Styler Dryer, $39.99

TotalBeauty.com average reader rating: 8.5*


"With this dryer, it only takes about 15 minutes on [medium heat] to dry my hair ..."

Want to see what's no. 1? Click here!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

MAC Studio Moisture Tint SPF 15: Detailed Information and Swatches





MAKEUP MULTITASKING: MOISTURE, COVERAGE AND UV PROTECTION ALL IN ONE
NEW M·A·C COSMETICS STUDIO MOISTURE TINT SPF 15


M·A·C is first and foremost a makeup artistry brand, but that is not to say that our treatment products aren’t heavy-hitters. The key point of difference in M·A·C skincare is that they were developed specifically to be used in conjunction with makeup. Most treatment products are designed for efficacy while being used alone, whereas M·A·C products are made to enhance the makeup experience.

Enter Studio Moisture Tint SPF 15, this sheer formula is no lightweight when it comes to performance. With a powerful selection of ingredients and skin beautifying effects, M·A·C’s latest debut, evens out skin tone with minimal colour, provides SPF 15 broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection and increases moisture levels.

It is perfect for busy women without time for a moisturizer, sunscreen and foundation or for women who prefer something lighter than traditional foundations. Studio Moisture Tint SPF 15 offers just the lightest touch of coverage. It smoothes on easily and requires minimal blending to create a flawless look, while concealing imperfections without entering into mask-like territory. This exceptional tinted moisturizer offers a cocktail of skin-loving elements normally found in treatment products.

In addition to hiding small imperfections and discolorations, this unique makeup multi-tasker is packed with a plethora of preventative and reparative extracts and boosts skin’s health with continued use. Soothing aloe and lecithin, combined with anti-irritant caffeine and sucrose extracts, helps all skin types defend against environmental aggravations. Humectants such as sodium hyaluronate and glycerin ensure optimal moisture levels, which are protected by added cholesterol to assist in repairing the skin’s lipid barrier. Collagen-stimulating palmitoyl oligopeptides help in repairing the appearance of past injuries and encourage skin to act in a more youthful manner. Damage caused by the sun and pollution are slowed down with the aid of antioxidant vitamins C and E to thwart free radicals, and ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate to provide UV protection.

Immediately upon application, skin becomes luminous, with a more even tone and youthful dewy finish. The sheer coverage lasts for hours. The oil-free moisturizing properties last for eight hours. Apply with fingers or a brush over the entire face, or dab onto trouble spots to create a flawless finish that’s never overdone.



STUDIO MOISTURE TINT SPF 15
Light Soft pale beige
Medium Warm beige
Medium Dark Caramel beige
Dark Deep caramel
Deep Dark Rich golden bronze
Suggested Retail Price $29.50 U.S./$38.00 CDN

Available
North America July 30, 2009 at all M·A·C locations,
1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics.com
International August 2009 at all M·A·C locations,
1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics.com

Stay tuned for my review!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Dove Heat Defense Therapy Series: Shampoo and Conditioner Review



Product Description:
Dove Heat Defense Therapy Shampoo for Frequently Heat Styled Hair With advanced protecting serum. Diagnosis: For hair that is exposed to frequent heat styling damage. Solution: Heat Defense Therapy System: Advanced protecting serum with millions of micro particles protects and strengthens hair from damage caused by frequent heat styling. Gently removes product build up and styling residues. The new daily regime that starts heat protection at the washing stage. Beautiful hair begins with protection and repair everyday.


Here is part II of the Dove Heat Defense series. Part I featured my review on the Dove Heat Defense Protect & Shine Mist. This entry focuses on the Dove Heat Defense shampoo and conditioner. It claims to protect and strengthen the hair follicles from damage from frequent hair styling. I admit that I use blow dryer every day to style and fluff out my baby-fine hair. With this in mind, I needed hair care products that protect my tresses from heat abuse. I don't want to fry my hair to death, so these new products from Dove are totally welcome in my shower stall.

My Take: I love their scent. Very clean, fresh, non-cloying. I also like the light feeling on the scalp. I use a very small amount for my short hair (I know that using too much shampoo and conditioner can leave the hair heavy with residue product, and can cause dandruff and flakies). It bubbled adequately, and the after-feel is light and refreshing. To my mind, I also like the added feeling of protection since I would be blow-drying my hair soon after. I apply a light coating of conditioner after which smells as fresh and clean as the shampoo.

I spritz a small bit of Dove Heat Defense Protect & Shine Mist on my towel-dried hair and it the entire routine leaves my hair shiny and bouncy even after blowdrying my hair. I don't get fried or split ends.

All in all, I really like the Dove Heat Defense system. If you use heat-activated styling products like curling or straightening irons, blow dryers and the like, this would be a good system to try. The best part about this system is its affordability. Shampoo and conditioner retail at $4.99 each (12 oz) at Walgreens. Check these out at your local drugstores and supermarkets.

Quiz: Does Your Daily Routine Need a Lift?

TotalBeauty.com
Quiz: Does Your Daily Routine Need a Lift?

Answer these questions to find out if you need to add a dash of daring to your humdrum existence


Tired of being stuck in a rut? No time like the present to add a little sparkle to your summer. Answer these questions to find out if your routine is in need of a pick-me-up, then learn fun tricks to help make every day a blast.

Take the quiz

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

BRTC Gold Caviar BB Cream Review







Okay, here is my second installment of the BB Cream series. My first review was on the L'egere Multi White, and in focus today is BRTC Gold Caviar. This is one of the most popular BB creams. This particular product boasts to be a triple action BB cream: sun protection (SPF20), whitening and anti-wrinkle. The BRTC Gold Caviar BB cream claims to contain caviar and white gold extracts to nourish and tighten the skin while covering skin imperfections. Sounds luxurious, isn't it? Imagine, caviar on your face! Other ingredients are Adenosine, albutin, oligopeptide-1, green tea extracts.







As with most BB creams, this looks like a dull dark beige blob prior to application that applies light on the face, and eventually adjusts to your skintone (for light to medium complexions). It is one of the thickest BB creams I've used, which is great I guess for coverage. I used it using my Coastal Scents kabuki-on-a-stick brush, and it applied really well and even. I applied a light layer of Meow mineral foundation on top of the BB cream, and set it with finishing powder.



Once again, if you have darker skintone, I don't know if you can actually pull off wearing BB creams as the main gripe about them is that they only have 1 or 2 shades at the most. You might be able to pull it off by wearing a darker foundation or loose powder on top, but I cannot be sure of that as I haven't tried it that way. Also, this particular brand of BB cream didn't go well with my combination skin, as I looked greasy after only a few hours. And also, unfortunately, this brand broke me out the most out of all the BB creams I've tried.

Verdict: This has good coverage and sun protection (SPF20), flawless finish on the face. The downsides are that there aren't a lot of shades to choose from, oil control is not good, and if you have sensitive skin, this might break you out like it did to me.

All in all, if you have light to medium skin and are not that acne-prone, try this BB cream and see if it will work for you. Oil control is also not excellent, so bring oil-blotting sheets, and a good primer and t-zone mattifier can really help.

As for its skincare claims, I haven't used it long enough to verify these, as I really didn't want to break my skin out even more. I've had better luck with other brands of BB creams, so stay tuned for more reviews.

Konad Nail Stamp Art: Golds and Browns Using Elizabeth Arden and China Glaze









Here's another Konad attempt using Elizabeth Arden nail lacquer in Christopher St. Cappucino C, a beautiful dark reddish brown color that caught my eye when I was shopping at ULTA. I immediately snagged it as it was real pretty. As I had mentioned in previous entries, China Glaze Romantique polishes make amazing Konad image polishes. I didn't like the Romantiques as nail polish as they were too metallicky for my taste, and I was almost going to dispose all of them, until I learned that they make great Konad polishes. In this Konad of the Day, I used China Glaze Romantique in Passion, a beautiful metallic light yellow-green-gold, and it was such a dream to apply. It adhered to the stamp very well, and it was a cinch to apply onto the nails. Love it. I liked the end result, it looks quite vintagey.

Beauty Spotlight: Smooth Shave

TotalBeauty.com
Beauty Spotlight: Smooth Shave

Everything you need for perfectly smooth and sexy skin


Your must-have item this summer: seriously sultry skin. Luckily, we've got everything necessary to achieve it. From quizzes to find your perfect shave method, to tips and celebrity inspiration. We even asked more than 200 guys what they find sexy -- check out their answers here.

Check it out

Monday, July 27, 2009

MAC Baby Bloom: Official Images and Product Description















STUDIO MOISTURE TINT SPF 15
Light Soft pale beige
Medium Warm beige
Medium Dark Caramel beige
Dark Deep caramel
Deep Dark Rich golden bronze
Suggested Retail Price $29.50 U.S./$38.00 CDN

SUNTINTS SPF20 LIQUID LIP BALM
Just a Smidge Soft pastel yellow with multi-coloured pearl
Lilt of Lily Soft creamy pale pink
Pink Tinge Clean bright yellow pink with gold pearl
Full of Grace Soft sheer rose
Moist Plum Light lilac with very fine pearl
Suggested Retail Price $14.50 U.S./$17.50 CDN

Available
North America July 30, 2009 at all M·A·C locations,
1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics .com
International August 2009 at all M·A·C locations,
1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics .com

M·A·C Baby Bloom will be available starting July 30, 2009. Suntints SPF 20 Liquid Lip Balm will be available through the end of September. Studio Moisture Tint SPF 15 will become a permanent product.

MAC Love That Look: Official Images and Product Description











NOTE: For initial swatches and review, CLICK HERE.

For a look featuring Rated "R" shadow, CLICK HERE. More swatches coming soon!




Love That Look brings back Starflash Eye Shadow, an astro-silky, creamy, cushion-like, pearl-finished shadow, in a fantasia of 12 frosted shades. This time, the colours are intensified and run across the spectrum. Pearlglide Eye Liners in four glittering shades, Zoomlash Mascara and two brushes, the 217 and the 239, help make sure eyes are covered.

Starflash Eye Shadow
Dreammaker Frosty yellow gold (frost)
Grand Entrance Frosty neutral peach beige
Smoke & Diamonds Frosty dirty taupe (frost)
Glamour Check! Frosty reddish brown
Strike A Pose Dirty/deep blue green
Ego Light yellow pink
Fashion Groupie Light Blue Violet
Unbasic White Bright off white
One-Off Mid-tone Green with Silver Pearl
Rated "R" Bright yellow pink
Style Snob Dirty pink brown with gold pearl
Fashion Light grey green with gold pearl
Suggested Retail Price: $14.50 U.S./$17.50 CDN

PEARLGLIDE EYE LINER
Rave Deep purple with purple glitter
Fly-By-Blu Light blue with blue glitter
Molasses Dirty brown mid-tone brown glitter
Black Russian Black with navy blue glitter
Suggestion Retail Price: $14.50 U.S./$17.50 CDN

Zoomlash
Zoomblack Rich Black
Suggested Retail Price: $13.00 U.S./$15.50 CDN

Available
North America July 30, 2009 at all M·A·C locations and www.maccosmetics.com
International August 2009 at at all M·A·C locations and www.maccosmetics.com

(NOTE: I saw this collection already out at my mall's Nordstrom MAC counter, so you might want to check this out at your own local stores.)