Let’s Talk Lips: Beauty Bakerie Lips

Beauty Bakerie sent a lovely package to me with products to try and you know my love of lip products made me dive right for this. The fact that it is a perfect holiday red just made it extra fabulous to try out. I am starting to put together my holiday look. Thus far I have the heels and the earrings, everything in between is a mystery. So holiday shades are top on the list to try.

And this Lip Whip Matte Liquid Lipstick in Mon Cheri does not disappoint. The red is a true blue red,, which is the type that does look best on my. A lot of the pinky reds look a little too pin on me and just don’t look quite right. But color aside, there is a lot to talk about with a lipstick.

First, there is application. With a dark liquid lipstick the wand really matters. I have one gorgeous liquid lip that has a rounded tip at the end of the wand and no matter how careful I am I make a mess with it. I often look like a three year old who got into their mother’s makeup.

“I’m pretty too mommy!” is fun but not usually the look I am going for when attending a meeting or going out with friends.

The wand on this Lip Whip is a triangular shape with the divot in the center to hold product. The point is pointy enough that I can outline my lips and then fill in the rest of the lip which makes it neat to apply with no messy bits. And in case you are wondering I do know that in the picture my bottom lip is slightly crooked. I didn’t notice until after several hours of wear and decided to leave it. It isn’t as noticeable when zoomed out and usually when I go into fix something like that I just end up with giant clown lips instead of actually fixing the problem. That is of course user error and not something anyone else can be blamed for.

Incidentally. if you ae someone who when you apply dark lipsticks ends up thinking that they look like they are frowning even when they aren’t (my lips tend to do that) try not going to the outer corners of your lips. Leave about a pinkie’s width of unpainted lips in the corners. It isn’t noticeable unless you walk around with your mouth wide open like a landed fish and it stops the darker shades from making you look like you are frowning. If you think your pinkies are too big, use a pencil. Put it across your lips and use that for gauging distance. I don’t have many fabulous makeup tricks, but this is one of my favorites.

My other favorite is that if your lips are not perfectly symmetrical, which mine aren’t, then instead of pressing them together after application, put a tissue or cloth between your lips to blot instead of rubbing together. It keeps the lines you took care to draw exactly where you put them.

So application went well with this Lip Whip, how did it do with the fine lines?

Fabulous is the answer. As you can see from the photo, there is no seeping into the fine lines. I was thrilled with that and honestly nothing more needs to e said other than Fabulous.

Drying down is an issue with liquid lips and I can say it is a bit of an issue with this one. This does dry down relatively quickly so any corrections you need to make, make them quickly. You have a little adjustment time, but not much. when it dries down it goes matte and it stays in place. At the moment my lips are in good shape. I use a lib scrub twice a week and an overnight lip Mask (Tatcha Kissu Lip Mask) every night before bed. In the winter it is the only way to keep my lips from chapping. when this dries down you will see any rough bits your lips have. It is the same for every liquid lip though so this shouldn’t be a surprise. I personally liked the level of dryness that this Lip Whip Gives. It isn’t too dry but it is a solid dry. With red lips I prefer this because i hate leaving bright lip smears all over things. It is less of a problem with a more neutral lip, or at least it doesn’t bother me as much, but i like this level of dry with a dark shade. It is a comfortable dry.

In this post you will see two lip swatches on my hand. One looks wet and shows the lipstick as it is first swatched. I then let the swatch dry to see how long it would last. The day I wore it, I washed my hand five times with soap and water, used hand sanitizer three times, followed by hand cream and then I took a shower and went to bed. The second picture of a swatch is the next morning. There is a little color fading. but the product is still there. So you can say it has some longevity to it. The color dimming when wearing it was minimal throughout the day for me. To remove it i did need a makeup remover though. Soap and water simply didn’t cut it. So that is something to remember, However, it did not stain my lips. When i used a makeup remover all of the lipstick came off with no stain left behind.

Which I found quite impressive. i figured anything that could hold on that long would leave a stain. It did not.

Over all I was very pleased with this liquid lip. It makes me want to try out some of the other shades. And for me, I love a matte liquid lip. If I want to brighten it up I can always apply a gloss over the top. This lip actually took well to gloss on top, just wait until it dries to apply the gloss. For me this is a clear winner and I will be purchasing more shades in the future.

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Trying out the Venus Immortals Palette From Lime Crime

For the past week or so I have been playing around with the Venus Immortals Palette from Lime Crime. I’ll admit I sort of stalked this palette on line for a while before deciding to purchase it. I have the Venus Exposed Palette and it is one of my favorite go to palettes if i want something quick and easy to work with. The colors are nice and it can give me great everyday looks or lean into drama with very little effort.

I know this Immortals Palette wasn’t going to be the same thing. I knew looking at it that this was not going to be an everyday palette. But I liked the color story and to be honest I was awash with a sea of neutrals palettes and this just appealed to me. Then in my stalking phase I saw they had a sale and I purchased it.

This was an interesting palette to work with actually. But because of the color story, it is not a quick and easy palette to work with, at least not for me. Let’s talk about the mattes first. There are four: Unseen, Unveil, Ash and Cameo. While Cameo looks a little beige in the pan, it applies white on the skin. Ash is a very light gray. Both of these lighter mattes blend really well. All of the shadows (matte and shimmer) are a bit powdery on the brush but if you tap off the brush there is no fall out during application.

Ash and Cameo can be blended out for a soft and subtle look. Unseen and Unveil are not subtle. They are very pigmented and even though Unveil swatches as a dark reddish brown on the lid it looks almost black. It just looks like a slightly less deep black than the black of Unseen.

When applied, Unseen can be a little patchy but it does blend well and settles in. There is a slight fading throughout the day, but at the end of a work day I still had eyeshadow on. It didn’t disappear.

Technically there are four shimmers, but the white of marble behaves a little differently so I really want to put that in a different category. I’m just not sure what category to put it into. But we’ll get to that in a minute, first the other three shimmers. They feel soft to the touch and like the mattes, the brush needs to be tapped off to get rid of some of the loose powder.

The Silver of Hail is stunning on the lid and is a stand out. It shimmers like foil when it is on the lid. The darker gold of Echo is actually one of my favorites and paired with the darker colors it is metallic but a bit more subtle than Hail. The darker tones of the old gold really work well with the darker shades.

Moth is more of an everyday work day shimmer. It pairs well with Unveil, but is almost too subtle to be with this palette. It really feels like it should be paired with some softer mattes. The other shadows in this palette are very bold and direct, but Moth is softer and tends to get a bit lost.

And then there is marble. It is the most powdery of the shades, but again tapping off the excess works well. It applies bright whit and glittery, but when you blend it the white fades down a bit and you can actually pull a light sheen of glitter over the lid.

This isn’t the boldest of looks but you can see how Marble was used to tone down the other shades and add a little sparkle over the top of them. The base shadows are Ash overlaid with Unseen at the outer edge and Cameo in the inner corner. then marble was blended over the top.

Over all I really enjoyed using this palette however it is not a quick palette to use. I didn’t pick it up and instinctively go for a certain shadow. I had to actually think about what i wanted and where I wanted the shadows. It is also not a palette I would use as an everyday work palette. The shadows will last on the lid all day, but because I had to think about the application it took a little longer to apply and for me the color story is a bit too bold for the office. It is a palette I will enjoy sitting down with and taking my time to play with. All of the shades are lovely and to be honest I will reach for this Marble shade to put over other eye looks. This Venus Immortals Palette form Lime Crime isn’t one I will pick up when I need to get out of the door in a hurry, however it is one I am happy to have in my collection and one i will look forward to playing with.



Trying out the Coraline Palette from Revolution Beauty

It has been a while since I have tried out a Revolution Beauty Palette. It isn’t because i don;t like them, I do actually and there are several that have caught my attention. However Revolution Beauty is one of those brands that I always picked up when I was in Ulta and not something I ordered. So if my local Ulta carried it, then I picked it up. Although to be completely honest the last time i was in Ulta I ran in to pick up a replacement for my Revolution Fast Base Foundation Stick (I love that stick formula foundation). And then I mostly walked in picked out the one i knew was in my shade and then went to the counter to pay. I was on a time crunch and so I didn’t look around.

However recently it came to my notice that many of my hair clips and sticks are showing a lot of wear. I tend to look at them, decide they are too worn and set them aside when what I needed to do was replace them. So I saw the two dragonflies and thought they would be fabulous and ordered the Coraline palette as well, since it too looked fabulous, and unlike the neutral palettes I have been reaching for as of late.

I liked that this palette opens to the side like a book and lays flat. Often with these smaller ones they lift up but don’t bend over all the way. Since this just opens like a book it is easy. The shades are purples and blacks with a bit of blue. One of the blacks has some sparkle but they tend to look the same when applied. The purples are various degrees of pigmentation. All of the mattes apply just a little bit streaky. However with a clean blender brush the streaks do blend out into a nice smooth color.

even if you don’t usually use and eyelid primer, I would go ahead and use one with this palette as the colors are far less streaky with a primer underneath. Also the reddish purple of Tunnel will stain your lids less if you use a shadow primer (or even just a concealer) underneath. It isn;t a major staining but your lids will look a little pink the next day.

the silver of dreaming was really the only disapointing shadow

the only shadow I had trouble with was the silver of Dreaming. It feels harder in the pan and it is not up to the pigment level of the rest of the pan. I would have loved a really good silver, especially given the theme of the palette, but this one just didn’t work for me. It was honestly the only disappointment for me.

For me part of the value is that I like the book Coraline (as well as the movie). This palette gives me the same aesthetic I love and I would keep it as a collector. It also has shadows that I don;t have a lot of. I do not in general have a lot of deep purple shadows. So I like having a few around. So for me this palette is worth it. The shadows are of decent quality and I enjoy using them. the streakiness of application is easily fixed by a blending brush and the shadows look good on the eyelid. For me the theme has more value than the shadows alone though so if you purchase something like this you will need to make your own judgement call about it. But personally I am happy to have this Coraline Palette in my collection and I would buy it again.



Let’s talk AOA Eye Shadows

The Four Quads from the Orbit Series from AOA Beauty

Recently I picked up a bunch of items from the new release section of the Shop Miss A website. There were several reasons. One was simple curiosity, how good would products that cost $1 be? The second was because they had several items I wanted to try in general (not just makeup related but from a wide array of categories). the third is that I have several younger family members who are just starting to get into makeup. They aren’t allowed to wear it out of the house but they are allowed to play with it at home.

So as Christmas is coming, I thought it might be fun to get them some items to play around with (this is also why I am testing out AOA’s Makeup brushes). But this only works if the items are worth playing around with. So I went kind of crazy with my shopping. Although as most everything is priced for around a dollar, it was low cost crazy shopping.

Still I feel kind of decadent when I say I bought every palette in the AOA’s Orbit line of eyeshadow Quads.

True there were only four and they were $1 each so it was a $4 decadence but it still feels grand to say.

Like I said there are four quads in this Orbit line. They are Mars, Mercury, Neptune and Saturn. I found them really interesting to use. The first one I tried was mercury. It has three shimmers and one matte shadow and is more in the pink tones. The shadows are not highly pigmented but they are buildable. The shimmers are fine with a dry brush but really pop when a wet brush is used for application. In the pan the shadows felt a little powdery but if you tapped the brush off then there was little fall out. They do tend to fade and crease a bit after a few hours of wear, but these are shadows you can extend the life of with an eyeshadow primer. For these I would go with something that has some sticking powder.

Sometimes I will actually use a little bit of the Milk Hydro Grip Primer when I need a grippy eye shadow primer. I just rub a little on the lids when applying it to the rest of my face. that is mostly because my default lid primer is usually whatever concealer I have on hand.

mercury swatches (2nd shade is almost exactly my skin color)

What I found about the Mercury palette is that it worked well as an easy and fast look that worked well for rushed mornings. It is simple to use and looks good. The shadows blend well together. I would prefer to exchange one of the shimmers for a second matte, but over all I was happy with it. Applied with a dry brush they are great for a daily look, with the brush wet with setting spray the volume is turned up a little for after work drinks.

I found the same held true for the Mars Palette. It has a bit more of an orange/brown tone to it, but it performed as well as the Mercury Palette.

Mars Palette (I know the one with the coppery shade is my favorite, big surprise, right?)

The Saturn palette tended to be less pigmented over all and took much more work for a simple look. I don’t mind low pigmented shadows because I like the control of building the shadow. This one just took more effort than the others. It was still decent shadow, but it just took me a little while longer to work with.

But then there was the Neptune Palette. this was very different from the other three and I think it is because the two silver shades lean more into the metallics. I think there is something different in the formula for metallics. The matte and the light shimmer worked as well as the others but the two different silvers are the differences.

Neptune quad – more fall out than others

At first I found it hard to get shadow on the brush simply by dipping brush to pan. I swiped it back and forth over the gunmetal silver of the palette and I think there was some sort of top spray on the shadows. After a few passes with the brush, the shadow became soft. In fact when you touch the shadows, the others feel kind of powdery but this one felt butter soft once the spray was gone from the top.

when applied, this shadow was more pigmented than the others and it was the only one I had fall out from. I really think it is due to something in the silver formula. It was easy to clean up, but by the end of the day I did have a glittery cheek.

far less pigmented than the others, the Saturn Quad was my least favorite

While Mercury and Mars are really good everyday palettes that i know I can grab when I am in a hurry in the morning, Neptune is one I would probably use at night. I think that for an evening out, the silver shades would stay long enough where you put them. They just didn’t want to stay all day in the office. (and who can really blame them?). the Saturn Palette is the only one I would really pass on because it was just a little harder to work with than the others (and they are shades in almost every other palette.)

Are these the best eyeshadows I have ever used? No. Are they worth keeping in my collection? Yes, well 3 out of 4 anyway. But here is the thing. Each of these quads costs $1 and gave me nice usable eyeshadow that I want to keep in my collection. Quite honestly Mars is going in the drawer with the products I use when I am pressed for time because I really did enjoy it and loved the quick look I came out with when i used it.

For one dollar these quads are definitely worth picking up. However it does come with a caveat. There was a noticeable difference between the shadows in the quads and these all came from the same series. I think that there might me more differences in performance between the different series. I did pick up a few single shadows from AOA that I will be trying out and I will see how they compare. Perhaps it is only the color formula that makes it different.

I do know that for one dollar I am happy to play around with the shadows to find the ones I like to use. They are decent quality and easy to use. And that sends me into Orbit.





Blowin’ Smoke with Colourpop

I saw this palette come out a while ago and I was intrigued. I loved the tonal variation of the shades and I put it on my list to pick up later. Well later finally arrived and i ordered it. I have used Colourpop shadows before. I generally find the shadows to be decently pigmented but not over the top with the pigmentation so they ae buildable rather than just a blast of color you are stuck with once you apply. they usually blend well and while they do fade a little throughout they day they are not too powdery if you tap your brush off before application.

I have not tried the Super Shock Shadows so they may perform differently. This is just how I feel about their palettes. And to be fair that is exactly how this palette performed. The shadows worked as expected. They were a little powdery but if i tapped the brush off before application then I didn’t get a lot of fall out. They were pigmented but not overly so and while they did fade a bit by the end of a long day, they, for the most part stayed in place. They blended well and i enjoyed them.

top row L to R

I know this doesn’t sound like much of a review, but Colourpop is so well known that I’m sure a lot of you already know how they perform so I paired it down to the basics for those who have never tried their shadows. What I mostly wanted to talk about today was Colorpop Palettes in general.

When they first came out, I have friends who decided to collect all the palettes they made. This wasn’t as silly as it sounds. They were (and still are) affordable palettes and in the beginning they weren’t coming out with them as rapidly as they seem to be now. Or perhaps that is me. I don’t recall them coming out that rapidly at any rate.

second row L to r

At the time I was living in a much smaller place and had very limited space. In fact at that point in time I had one Urban Decay Palette for everyday use and one Chantecaille Single Shadow. i used both down to pan actually. By the time I had enough space to think about building a collection there were so many Colourpop shadows that it seemed overwhelming. I think that pretty much everyone I knew who was going the collecting route abandoned that plan a long time ago for space reasons if nothing else.

third row L to R

For me Colourpop is a brand i turn to when i am looking for something to fill in the gaps of my collection. Which it is actually perfectly set up to do. Realize you have no greens and want to try some green toned looks? Colorpop has you covered. Looking for golds, blues or purples? Yup they have that too. They are good shadows and the way they seem to curate their palettes means that it is easy to pick up a selection in a color range you are looking for, They have mixed palette too, but for me their color collections are their strong suits.

The full shade variation

For me black shadows have been a bit of a disappointment in many of the palettes I have that include one. Given that Colourpop is always reliable with their shadows, i thought that this Blowin Smoke palette would work. It also gave me a selection of grays that i like as well. And as expected they work well. i had none of the powdery-ness or streakiness that a lot of black shadows can give. While the color variation isn’t that great, there is a clear variation between the shades allowing for subtle transitions. I was a little disappointed that the black with sparkles was less shimmery than expected ((bottom right Shade Night Dreams) and I would have liked Ignite (middle row far right) to have a slightly deeper purple tone when applied, bit otherwise I am very happy with this palette. it fills a gap in my collection, color wise and for me that makes it well worth the price.

Am I going to start collecting Colourpop Palettes? No. But I will keep an eye out for palettes that fill in gaps in my collection. As many of my palettes lean towards the neutral everyday tones, I’m sure there are plenty of gaps where Colourpop palettes can fill in. Fir me, this was the one i was most drawn to and I am very pleased with my purchase. Blowin’ Smoke may not be an everyday palette, but it is one that I will reach for consistently in the future.

Trying out the Cover Girl Aqua Smooth Foundation

For the last few years my in person shopping has dwindled considerably. Truth be told I wasn’t doing a lot of in person shopping, but when the would went a little crazy, I limited myself to groceries and the occasional Target run. Everything else was more or less done on line. And there it more or less stayed.

While there is nothing wrong with that I do miss strolling through the drug store and getting inspired or simply interested in what is there. Recently I found myself in a drug store and spent a little while strolling and reveling in just seeing the products available. While I could have easily filled a basket with things I wanted to try, I did attempt to limit myself (my budget appreciates my lack of routine drug store visits even if I miss them.).

one of the things I decided to try was the Covergirl Aqua Smooth makeup + titanium Dioxide Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 20. On the package it clams to be “a solid makeup that transforms into liquid for smooth coverage.”

bare face

It is in essence, a cream foundation with sunscreen mixed in. For me SPF 20 isn’t enough and I do have my regular sunscreen layered with my skincare prior to applying makeup so I wouldn’t wear this on it’s own and expect it to provide me with the sun protection my skin needs. However I don’t mind a little bit of makeup back up to my skincare or my sunscreen.

As you can see in the package the product comes with a little foam applicator. I’ll be honest, I tried to use it but I have never had any luck with those little foam rectangle applicators so I rolled in a makeup sponge. While I typically prefer a makeup sponge with an angle, this foundation worked best with just your typical rounded makeup sponge. The one I used was actually the Luxie Makeuep sponge (the set is actually on sale at the moment if you are looking to stock up on some good quality makeup sponges). It had a good solid density to the sponge. There were a couple that were just too light and squishy to work well. While I really liked the Luxie sponge for this, look for a firmer makeup sponge as it makes application a lot easier.

half foundation, half not, this was a no primer try on and you can see why it needs a primer

Normally I also use a makeup brush and then touch up with the makeup sponge but this is not a brush friendly formula. I’ll go into that a little bit more in a moment, but essentially you are going to want a firm makeup sponge with this foundation.

The Aqua Smooth applied really well actually. I wouldn’t say it turned from a solid into a liquid like an alchemical trick, but the cream formula did melt into the skin for really good coverage. If used without a primer, it did tend to sink into the fine lines and pores. I definitely needed a primer underneath.

Interestingly, which primer I used mattered a lot with this foundation. I don’t know if it was the sunscreen or the potential solid to liquid formula, but if I didn’t use a gripping primer, the foundation never really settled. It continued to be movable. I don’t mean that it went off to lunch on it’s own leaving me bare faced, but when I went in with powdered products using brushes to apply them, the brushes for powder products would always streak the foundation and lave brush marks. Going back in with a sponge fixed them,. but it was still there. It also meant I needed brighter powder products because the sponge always took off a little bit of the powder.

just the full face of foundation

I had better luck with cream face products, but even with a finger application, the foundation could move a bit and leave some spots of less coverage.

All of this was easily remedied by a gripping primer. I went with the Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Primer, because let’s face it if the Milk Makeup Hydro grip can’t grip it, it isn’t staying in place. With the gripping primer underneath it stayed beautifully. I still preferred to use cream products over it as the cream products sort of melted into the foundation to give a better natural sort of look.

this isn’t a foundation I would wear for a formal and really dramatic look. This is the sort of foundation i would go for when heading out to a barbeque or picnic. It is an more natural everyday foundation. The added sunscreen makes it good for the out of doors as well. there is a slight sunscreen scent to it, but it is very light. I did find that it also wasn’t the sort of foundation to sweat off easily. which for me was a bonus.

complete look

the one concern I have is that it is not a long wear foundation. You can get about four to six hours of wear before it starts to sink into fine lines. I especially had trouble around my mouth. I also needed to pat it down with pressed powder after a few hours (2-3) because I was getting a bit of shine. If you go for the dewy look it shouldn’t bother you. I’m just not a dewy look sort of person. Over all I would say this is a decent foundation to wear to a casual out door event or to put on when you need to look good for a meeting in a hurry. It is very quick to apply. Just remember to use a gripping primer and pair it with cream products and it will look beautiful for four to six hours. As my in person meetings rarely last more than two, I most certainly have a place for the Covergirl Aqua Smooth Foundation in my collection even if it will never make my favorites list.

Using the Milk Makeup Rise Mascara

I can be rather forgetful when it comes to reviewing mascaras. The truth is that I haven’t really been excited by a mascara in a while. The past few I’ve tried have been generally categorized as ‘okay for everyday use’. Which is a fine designation for a mascara. I do after all wear mascara everyday. I don’t use false lashes so my lashes rely on mascara to help them look their best.

I actually like the look of false lashes, but I’ve had some allergic reaction with a few of the adhesives before, plus I ended up ripping out several of my natural lashes with them which I didn’t like. The biggest reason I don’t wear them though is that it doesn’t matter how outlandish or natural looking the false lashes are, they always make my lid feel weighted and like i am half asleep. which isn’t a feeling I liked. So I like the look, I just don’t like wearing them.

Hence my love of mascaras.

But like I said as nice as the every day mascaras are, they aren’t terribly exciting. This Milk Makeup Rise mascara is exciting. It is described as …

An award-winning everyday mascara that weightlessly lifts, lengthens, curls, and adds subtle volume for the most natural-looking lashes possible. This product is 93% natural, vegan, clean, cruelty-free, paraben-free, and fragrance-free. 

Normally I don’t smell mascaras because most of them just smell the same and it isn’t a terribly pleasant scent. Seeing the fragrance free in the description I had to then smell the mascara. It smells surprisingly like toasted nuts. Like a mix of almond and walnut actually. which is a bit peculiar as thee are no nuts in the ingredients from what I saw. Its actually kind of a pleasant scent.

In general I like Milk Makeup Products. I find them to work well for me so I was expecting to like this mascara. I wasn’t expecting to love it, but I do. Let me show you why.

First with the eyes closed.

And then with the eyes open.

I am a fan. This mascara lengthened the lashes beautifully and lifted them up as well. This is two applications in the photos. I tend to apply mascara to one eye, apply it to the second and then do a second rotation. It actually doesn’t matter what mascara it is, I can never resist the second rotation.

While my lashes are healthy and relatively long, they are a lot lighter at the tips so my lashes tend to fade out and look shorter without mascara. This was beautifully dark, but I have to say that in addition to the lengthening, the mascara lifted and curled the lashes wonderfully well. I did not use an eyelash curler and while that is a tool I like, i am not opposed to not having to use it every day. With this mascara I didn’t need the lash curler. The mascara lasted all day on my lashes without flaking and I am already regretting that this tube is empty. It is a sample size so I knew it wasn’t going to last long. And so I say farewell to this tiny tube. I will however be purchasing a full size in the very near future. This may be one of the best products I’ve tried from Milk Makeup in a while and the Rise Mascara itself may be one of the better mascaras I’ve tried in a while. If you are looking for lengthening and curling, this is definitely a mascara to check out.

e.l.f. cosmetics

Why Hello Thailor

This Kim Chi Chic Beauty Thailor Bronzer (shade I went to Venice) is the second makeup item that I have tried from the Kim Chi Beauty Brand. The First is the puff Puff Pass Setting powder and that I absolutely love. The powder is nice and the powder puff that comes with it fantastic.

This Thailor bronzer comes in a plastic heart. While it is cute, I wish it were a little less puffy of a heart as it does take up a little more space. But that is a minor complaint. The magnet on the package is really strong so I don’t worry about it accidentally coming open. And the mirror is a good usable size inside the heart shaped compact.

There are eight different shades. I am actually quite pleased with this one actually. It is a soft buttery formula in the pan. It did have an impression on the product, but use has already worn it away. Because of the soft formula, I expect it will be one of those products that does get used up pretty easily. I still think it will last a while, because there is a lot of it, but I think the wear will be noticeable because it is a soft formula.

completely bare cheek

which I don’t actually mind. I would much rather have a good product that I can use up than a product that I keep long enough to go bad in the case.

It is highly pigmented. One quick swipe through the powder was all that I needed to do in order to collect enough product on the brush (because it is such a soft formula you do not need to press down to gather, just swipe across the top. – there may be an over spray that wears off on the first use or two as it gets much more pigmented after the first couple of uses.)

just foundation and bronzer

I found myself using a light hand when i applied the bronzer because it is very easy to get a deep streak with this product. I know some people really like the dramatic contour line. Personally I like a more natural look in my day to day life. I do like the bronzer to make my cheekbones look a little more prominent and by extension less rounded by fat.

What I really liked about this formula was that it is very bendable. if you find yourself putting up a dark line that is a little too harsh on your face, it is easy to soften the edges and blend it out.

However this bendability does come with the soft formula and that soft formula is probably also the reason that this tends to fade out a little bit towards the end of the ay. As I tend to go soft and subtle with my bronzer, it is not as noticeable a fade.

If you are going for a dramatic look, the drama may fade a bit after about five hours. So plan accordinly.

Personally I really like this bronzer. Because I do lean into subtle, I use less product, One swipe of the brush is all i need for each cheek. I love the bendability. I also sort of like the restraint of having to start with a light touch. It helps me get my cheeks even. I go in lightly with the brush to make sur they are where I want them to be and then I used the same brush to darken with the product still on the brush. and then I blend. It works for me, as does this Thailor Bronzer by Kim Chi Chic Beauty. I would 100% purchase this again.


Trying out the Bellapierre Peach Blossom Palette

Normally I will give an eyeshadow Palette longer than a week’s worth of use before I review it. However this Peach Blossom Palette from Bellapierre is a four pan palette and I feel that a week was long enough.

As you can see from the picture, it is a four pan palette, unsurprisingly in peach tones. It features one matte shade (the peachy shade on the far left named Dahlia. The others are all shimmers. Glisten is the silvery/whitish shade, Hawaii is the peach-ish shimmer and Copper Mine is the (you guessed it) coppery shade on the far right.

I’ll be honest. I didn’t think I would like this palette at all. I thought maybe i would get some use out of the coppery shade as, let’s face it, I love copper shadows. I simply don’t really like peach tones. On me they are either too orange and make me look vaguely jaundiced or they will be too pinkish and make me look a little fevered. Sometimes they will go for a darker peach that actually blends in so well with my eye lids that it doesn’t even seem to be there.

But as many products from Bellapierre as I have tried, I have never tried their eyeshadow so I decided to give them a go. And I am glad I did. The swatch of Dahlia was not encouraging though. It turned out way brighter than I wanted to wear. But as I was also testing out a lipstick that was way brighter than I usually wear, I soldiered on. I figured at the very least they would look like they belonged together.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that when applied to the lid the eyeshadow I thought was going to a bright toxic looking coral turned out to be a rather subdued pinkish tone that worked as a an excellent summer shade for a low key look. In fact it made me change my face products this week. I started out wearing an actual foundation, but the shadow worked better for a more natural look and I shifted to tinted moisturizers.

It was not at all what I was expecting. The one matte of Dahlia didn’t really blend well with the shimmers, but it was easy to layer shimmers over it. Which is nice as all I have in this palette are shimmers. And for it’s pale application, it did last throughout the day. There was some fading but the shadow never truly disappeared. I did have to tap the brush off so no loose powder ended up on my nose but over all it was a surprisingly pleasant shadow to work with.

the coral shade turned out to be much more subtle than I expected and was a nice soft shadow to wear on a low makeup day

The shimmers applied well also. they layered over the matte but weren’t really keen on blending. You could almost always see a line where one stopped and the other began.

The one matte worked well with all three of the shimmers. I will say I didn’t really care for the shade Hawaii. It had the coral undertones that I feared in Dahlia. Which is more about me and colors than the shadows. I did like that the coppery shade had reddish pink undertones that paired really well with Dahlia as well. The shadows were chosen well and for what it is, this is a nice palette. I could easily see slipping this into an overnight bag to use for a quick trip. With only one matte I think it would get boring after a while. But for an overnight trip or a weekend adventure this is perfect. It is a slim palette with a hard case that would travel well. Just make sure everything goes with the pinkish tones and you will be set.

Will I be reaching for this often, probably not. i can’t see it being my go-to palette. That is simply because even though I was pleasantly surprised, these still really aren’t toes I reach for all the time. I am happy to have it as I think that on occasion I will use it when I am in the mood for the shades. Even more I am pleased to have tried out some of Bellapierre’s shadows. It is a formula I like. It is soft and not too powdery. It is not as pigmented as I expected but did give good color. They don’t build very well. That is it’s main downfall. You aren’t going to get deep tones, at least not from the shadows in this palette. Do I think that it is worth the $25 it retails for? No. I think that is a bit overpriced for what it is. However, it is a formula of eyeshadow i would not mind experimenting with more in the future. And for me, that is well worth knowing.

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A Week of OFRA’s Signature Symphony Palette

L to R: Sublime, Charm, Blissful, Tempo and Godiva

Recently I have been using the OFRA Signature Palette – Symphony. It came in a Boxycharm Premium and retails on OFRA’s Website for $32.There are five pans. There is one shimmer (Sublime), One satin (Tempo), two mattes (Charm and Godiva) and an eyeshadow that is essentially an OFRA Highlighter (Blissful). I love OFRA Highlighters and I think that is smart actually. It works really well as both a stunning shadow and as a highlight.

And to be honest, OFRA’s highlighters are so big it takes forever to actually get through one of them, so I don’t mind having the smaller highlight. These are not the first eyeshadows that I have tried from OFRA. I really love the formula. They are very saturated colors. While the darker shades can scatter powder around the eye, if you tap the brush off before using it is generally not a problem.

The quality of the shadows is there.

The mix of shadows in general works well the Lighter matte (Charm) is almost exactly my skin color when applied so it doesn’t show up well and is okay-ish as a transition. The shimmer (Sublime) is stunning and the brownish shade (Godiva) is pigmented with a reddish tinge to it. It is also a bit more powdery than the other shadows and takes a little bit more time to blend out. It actually works a lot better if you use an eyeshadow Primer.

The highlight/shadow, Blissful, is stunning. There is the cranberry colored satin shade (Tempo) that is the biggest pop of color in the palette. And boy does it pop. As with all of these shadows, one dip in the pan is enough o cover the eye. The problem is that if you use that shade it will dominate. It is very difficult to tread softly with Tempo and using it with any other shadow obliterates the other shadow.

Except for the highlighter, Blissful. It can hold it’s own with the shade Tempo.

For me this makes this a rather limited use palette. I can create a look with the cranberry shade, either with or without the highlighter. I can use the brown with the shimmer or the highlighter or even on it’s own. I have tried varying the looks over the past two weeks, but the truth is they all tend to come out fairly similar.

Which doesn’t mean I don’t like them. I do actually. I just think it is a palette I would pull out for a day of use, not one I would use for a week or so. It certainly isn’t one I would travel with, which is a bit of a shame. It is the perfect size for traveling.

the removable pans from other palettes

While I like this palette, what bothers me is that all of the other OFRA Palettes I have from blush to face, have removable pans. I really like this, especially in these plastic hard case palettes. It means that when a shade runs out I can replace the shade and just put the new one in an exiting palette without wasting the plastic palette. It also means I can customize the palette. If there is a shade that doesn’t work for me I can swap it out.

It is one of the things I especially like about OFRA Palettes, that removability/reusability.

This palette has the hard plastic case but unlike the other palettes, the shadows can’t be removed. They don’t have that little divot to the side that lets you take the pan out of the palette. I know it is from their signature collection which might be why the shadows can’t be removed, but even if they didn’t want them swapped with other shades it would be nice to have the option to replace a shadow once it ran out if I liked it enough to use it to pan.

I find it wasteful especially since their other palettes have this feature. Other than that they are beautiful shadows that stay in place all day. I just could never control the cranberry shade. I like it and it pairs well with the silver of blissful. I will actually probably reach for it a lot in the fall and winter. I just can’t make it play well with others. because of this and the inability to remove pans, I find this OFRA Signature Symphony Palette a nice, but limited use palette.