8 Bargain Swaps for Luxury Beauty Products

8 Bargain Swaps for Luxury Beauty Products

You'll love these highly-rated, affordable alternatives for crazy-expensive products

8 Bargain Swaps for Luxury Beauty Products

This is a TotalBeauty.com beauty products article

Looking great doesn't have to cost a fortune -- but who's got the time to hunt for quality products that won't break the bank? We do! See the 8 beauty steals that give their luxury counterparts a run for their money.

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China Glaze Capitol Colours: The Hunger Games Collection Swatches Part 1

"What will you be wearing to the opening ceremonies?"

The release of the collection follows the debut of the China Glaze® Capitol Colours consumer and beauty trade advertising campaign featuring the story’s Effie Trinket, who is assigned by the Capitol to escort and prepare the Tributes from District 12 for the 74th Annual Hunger Games. The ad features the above-quoted tagline, encouraging fans of The Hunger Games to support their favorite tribute and district by wearing a corresponding shade. Full-page ads will run in the March issues of teenVOGUE, People Style Watch and InStyle.

China Glaze's Capitol Colours is inspired by the most anticipated movie release of the year, The Hunger Games which opens March 23rd. I cannot wait for this movie! I am loving the book and I am bent on reading the entire trilogy. I've never been a Twilight fan so I know that I am not reading The Hunger Games just because of any hype; I really like these kinds of stories.

Anyhow, back to Capitol Colours. I think each one of the 12 shades represents the 12 districts of Panem, the imaginary country in the book that is supposed to be North America in the distant future. I will show the first six shades in this entry, then I will post the last six in a separate blog post.

Check out China Glaze Capitol Colours Swatches Part 2 here!

Hook and Line

Dr. Brandt Pore Thing™ T-Zone Pore Tightener Review

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OPI Holland Swatches Part 2

Here's OPI Holland swatches part 2. If you missed my OPI Holland Swatches Part 1, check out the foregoing link! Here are the rest of the OPI Holland:

Wooden Shoe Like to Know?

Wooden Shoe Like to Know? (outrageous name!) is a milk chocolate brown shade with hidden (very subtle) golden shimmer. Pretty straight up but the shimmer is a welcome surprise. Wearable and can be an office neutral.

Dutch 'ya Just Love OPI?

Dutch 'ya Just Love OPI? is a very pretty purple cream with also a hidden shimmer. It has subtle gold micro-flecks that look best under direct sunlight. This is one of my top favorites from this collection. So pretty.

Kiss Me on My Two Lips

Kiss Me on My Two Lips is a nice carnation pink, very bright I must say. Perfect for spring and summer, and this would make a great pedi color.

A Roll in the Hague

A Roll in the Hague is a fiery orange cream. Can look amazing on the right skintone. Not my favorite as many orange shades look dirty on my skintone, although this one is pretty bright so it contrasts nicely on my skin.

Reds Lights Ahead...Where?

Reds Lights Ahead...Where? looks like a watermelon pink with red tones to me. It's quite bright and the perfect shade to welcome spring. Another nice pedi color.


I am not a huge fan of this shade as it is very streaky and leaves brushstrokes, mostly due to its frost finish. Looks like a raisin frost to my eyes. I'm not feeling it.

All in all, I like the formula of this collection with the exception of Vampsterdam's. It's very easy to apply, opaque in 1 or 2 coats, and evens out nicely. My definite favorites are the two blues (I Have A Herring Problem and I Don't Give a Rotterdam which were swatched in Part 1), Thanks a Windmillion, Dutch 'ya Just Love OPI?, Kiss Me On the Two Lips. Runners up are Gouda Gouda Two Shoes and Wooden Shoe Like to Know. I like the color selection, although I feel that I've seen these shades before. For those who don't have these shades yet, this is a solid collection and you will be able to find at least one that will pique your interest.

The Shades Of U Rating: 4.25 out of 5

A-England The Legends Nail Varnish: Princess Sabra, Dragon and Saint George Swatches and Review

I was able to get my hands on some A-england nail varnishes from The Legends collection. This is a new nail polish company from the UK that is slowly becoming a household name in the nail community. It has a wide array of shades to choose from, and the newest collection, The Legends, has some really gorgeous holo shades. I got three from this collection and here are my thoughts and swatches.

Princess Sabra

Princess Sabra is a golden olive bronze holo. It is a scattered holo as opposed to being a linear one (holo particles are scattered whereas linear holos form a rainbow line vertically). It is beautiful under direct sunlight though, but even indoors, you can see how beautiful the nuances are.


Dragon is one of my absolute favorites from my collection. It is a beautiful moss green holo with a myriad of nuances that changes as light shifts. It has a lot of golden tones to it, which I love because I love gold-toned greens. Green is my favorite color, so this one is right up my alley.

Saint George

Saint George is a gorgeous deep teal holo. This looks phenomenal under sunlight, but it is disappointing indoors as it just looks like a dark shiny polish with none of the holo-y goodness outdoors. Princess Sabra and Dragon look more holo indoors than Saint George. Nonetheless, this is a breathtaking shade and I will be enjoying this shade all through the season.

I am loving the formula of these varnishes. They are literally opaque in one coat, and even though the consistency is a bit thicker than most polishes, I did not have a hard time applying these. They applied easily and pretty much evened themselves out on the nailbed without much help.  If you know about the Legend of Saint George, you would know that all the shades and names of the polishes from this collection were well thought of and lovingly created by the owner, Adina.

I love start-up nail polish companies and I will be supporting A-england, knowing now how great concept is (paying homage to England and the legends and folklore that nourish and make up its culture), how wonderful the shades are and how rich and opaque the formula is. Check them out at a-england.co.uk (free worldwide shipping).

The Shades Of U Rating: 4.8 out of 5

Introducing Estee Lauder Mad Men® Collection

Shake. Stir. Seduce.

A Limited Edition Makeup Collection Inspired by the Award Winning AMC Drama Mad Men®
The NEW collection features two classic makeup items inspired by the look of the women featured in Mad Men’s® 1960’s New York City setting. Bold, red lips and creamy, rouged cheeks define this iconic moment in time:

− Estée Lauder Mad Men® Collection Lipstick in Cherry features a cream satin finish and continual moisture delivered to lips for smooth, rich color.

− Estée Lauder Mad Men® Collection Creme Rouge in Evening Rose is an easily blendable and buildable formula that highlights cheeks with a dewy, smooth and natural finish.

Estée Lauder Mad Men® Collection Lipstick and Estée Lauder Mad Men® Collection Creme Rouge are packaged in a fluted golden case placed in a leather-like gold pouch, and the outer cartons are a custom design inspired by the Estée Lauder packaging from the 1960’s.

Available for a limited time beginning March 2012 exclusively at Bloomingdale’s stores nationwide, www.bloomingdales.com and www.esteelauder.com.

Estée Lauder Mad Men® Collection Lipstick in Cherry $25.00
Estée Lauder Mad Men® Collection Creme Rouge in Evening Rose $40.00
Prices are suggested retail.

Mad Men® is a registered trademark of Lions Gate Television, Inc.

MAC Too Supreme Sheen Supreme Lipglass and Sheen Supreme Lipstick

We celebrate East Asia chic: with fresh shades of Sheen Supreme Lipsticks along with the introduction of NEW LIMITED LIFE Sheen Supreme Lipglass. Delivered in a clickable pen-style applicator with a super-soft cover-your-lips-in-a-stroke brush. Soft, succulent shades with the lightness of a butterfly – and all the superb sheen no other lip colour can match. Our lips? East or West – they can’t get enough. Kamsa habnida, Asia.

Available March 1, 2012 through April 5, 2012.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Light cream beige (frost)
Fuji Pink Pale peach with low level pearl (frost)
Moon Beach Warm light beige with pearl (frost)
Cherry Fest Rose with high level pearl (frost)
Sweet Bean Cool beige with pearl (frost)
Almond Blossom Pale pink with high level pearl (frost)
Mango Sheen Bright coral with pearl (frost)
Asian Butterfly Lilac with pearl (frost)
Imperial Red Bright rose with pearl (frost)
Dress Kimono Mid-tone frosted plum (frost)
Black Tea Deep brown with pearl (frost)
Suggested Retail Price
$19.00 U.S./$22.50 CDN

Supremely Confident
Pale nude (creme)
Happy Hibiscus Creamy white-pink (frost)
Fashion City Neutral coral pink (creme)
Bare Again Pinky neutral beige (creme)
Tea Ceremony Neutral beige pink (creme)
Sheer Mandarin Mid-tone yellow orange (creme)
Korean Candy Bright orange-red (creme)
Supreme Style Light coral pink with pearl (frost)
Royal Azalea Bright mid-tone pink (creme)
Blossom Culture Soft pink with pearl (frost)
Zen Rose Bright mid-tone fuchsia (creme)
Insanely It Watermelon pink (creme)
Asian Flower Creamy lavender (creme)
Suggested Retail Price
$14.50 U.S./$17.50 CDN

Available North America March 1, 2012, International Ex Asia March 2012, International Asia April 2012 at all M·A·C locations, 1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics.com

MAC Zoom Water Fast Lash

ZOOM LASH is back in a NEW WATERPROOF formula that instantly combs and lifts the lashes for incredible volume. Our perfectly sculpted, patented brush with unique three-sided fibres embraces, holds and separates each lash, quickly coating from root to tip in a creamy, velvety shade that keeps lashes light and flexible, while adding definition. Leave it to M∙A∙C to take this number one selling mascara and make it better!

zoom waterfast lash
waterfast black
$15.00 u.s./$18.00 cdn

available north america march 1, 2012, international march 2012 at all M∙A∙C locations, 1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics.com

MAC and Marcel Wanders 2012

Air of Style

M·A·C is once again partnering with Amsterdam-based, globally renowned, industrial designer Marcel Wanders to bring you the second incarnation of M·A·C & Marcel Wanders. This limited-edition colour collection features his wonderfully sophisticated, attention-grabbing aesthetic. The Dutch design dynamo’s antique-meets-modern cult-collectible packaging returns an ultra-sleek chrome finish.

Available March 1, 2012 through March 29, 2012.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Suggested Retail Price $40.00 U.S./$48.00 CDN

Suggested Retail Price $80.00 U.S./$96.00 CDN

Soft peachy beige with pearl (frost)
Annemiek Soft neutral pink with pearl (frost)
Felicienne Dirty mauve with pearl (frost)
Inez Plum with gold pearl (frost)
Suggested Retail Price $22.50 U.S./$26.50 CDN

Creamy beige with gold pearl (frost)
Julia Light blue pink with pearl (frost)
Karin Pink-mauve with pearl (frost)
Kim Dirty plum with pearl (frost)
Suggested Retail Price $22.50 U.S./$26.50 CDN

Light Medium
Pale Ivory
Medium Plus Tan Beige
Suggested Retail Price $60.00 U.S./$72.00 CDN

False Black
Suggested Retail Price $18.00 U.S./$21.50 CDN

Suggested Retail Price $80.00 U.S./$96.00 CDN

Available North America March 1, 2012 International March 2012 at all MAC locations, 1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics.com

MAC Chenman Collection

Chen Man (陳曼) is the star of the Chinese fashion photography world, rising to prominence on the strength of a series of groundbreaking covers created for the Shanghai- based Vision, China’s first avant-garde fashion magazine, merging her exquisite aesthetic with computer virtuosity. For her M·A·C collaboration, a bold, sensual and lyrical colour collection inspired by the artist’s fascination with love and water (represented by the colours pink and blue). Defining the moment while heralding the future, M·A·C Chenman defies the gaze to look away.

Available March 1, 2012 through April 5, 2012.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Play It Proper
Pastel soft pink with sparkles
$23.00 U.S./$27.50 CDN

Supersweet Duo
– half bronze, pink, gold mélange/half solid golden pink (frost)
Pink Union Duo – half taupe, lavender, brown mélange/half solid dark violet (frost)
Love Cycle Duo – half light blue, white, dark blue mélange/half solid dark royal blue (frost)
$20.00 U.S./$24.00 CDN

Zoom Fast Black Lash
Carbon black
$15.00 U.S./$18.00 CDN

Solid flat black
Waveline Navy blue with low level gold pearl
$15.00 U.S./$18.00 CDN

Reflects Blue
Sparkling blue
$20.00 U.S./$24.00 CDN

Naval Blue
Deep smoky blue
$20.00 U.S./$24.00 CDN


$15.00 U.S./$18.00 CDN

Force of Love
Vivid honeysuckle pink (matte)
Budding Love Pale lavender (lustre)
$14.50 U.S./$17.50 CDN

Force of Love
Vivid honeysuckle pink
Budding Love Pale lavender
$14.50 U.S./$17.50 CDN


$19.00 U.S./$23.00 CDN

Breezy Blue
Dark blue
Pinkly Fresh Mid-tone blue pink
$16.00 U.S./$19.00 CDN

Angled Brow
$19.50 U.S./$23.50 CDN

Available North America March 1, 2012 International March 2012 at all M·A·C locations, 1.800.588.0070 and www.maccosmetics.com

Jesse's Girl Nail Color in Firefly Swatches and Review

Jesse's Girl in Firefly over Essie in Navigate Her (spring green cream)

Bobbi Brown Brightening Nudes Collection March 2012

New Brightening Finishing Powder
Sheer and silky, Brightening Finishing Powder features six luminous shades that blend together and illuminate the skin for a beautifully natural, healthy finish. Formulated with Mulberry, Grape, Scutelleria and Gentian Root Extracts, this innovative formula instantly brightens the skin with a wash of skin-tone correct color, while the soft texture perfectly sets makeup without feeling heavy or weighed down. To instantly brighten the complexion, blend all the shades together with a Face Blender or Powder Brush and apply to cheeks, forehead, nose and chin. Encased in a stunning square portable compact for easy on-the-go application.
Shade: Brightening Nudes
Suggested Retail Price: $50

New Shades
Sparkle Eye Shadow is a featherweight formula that instantly lights up eyes with a unique combination of shimmering pearls and glitter in a translucent base. Creamy-soft powder shadow glides on smoothly and clings to lids for crease-free, long-lasting wear. The Brightening Nudes Collection includes four new, beautifully sheer pastel shades in pink, silvery white, grey and soft gold that illuminate eyes with subtle shimmer and shine.

Silver Moon
Suggested Retail Price: $28

An updated version of a perennial Bobbi favorite, Crystal Glitter Lip Gloss is formulated with glitter for the perfect amount of sparkle. The clear, high-shine formula is the easiest way to instantly enhance lips–wear it alone for a naturally luscious look, or layer it over your favorite Bobbi Brown lipstick for added brilliance. Comes in an easy-squeeze tube that makes it ideal for at home or on-the-go.
Suggested Retail Price: $18

This sheer, reflective formula wakes up the face and instantly helps create the illusion of fuller lips. Three new soft and ethereal shades leave lips looking perfectly pearlescent. Wear alone or on top of your favorite Bobbi Brown lipstick.
Suggested Retail Price: $23

Lilac Pearl
Pink Opal
Pink Lilac

Available: March 2012 at all Bobbi Brown Counters and www.bobbibrown.com