Tuesday, August 31, 2010

ELF Cosmetics: New Mineral Brushes

Today on ELF's Facebook page I read that they just released new mineral brushes. If you don't know, I am a huge fan of ELF Cosmetics and makeup brushes are something that I definitely hoard, so this is totally awesome news. These are part of the Mineral line and are selling for $5 a piece. All the brushes are made of antibacterial synthetic taklon bristles with recycled ferrules and 100% cruelty free with sustainable bamboo handles that first ergonomically in your hand for comfort and precise application.

There are 12 new brushes (as you can see in the image above), they included:

All over eyeshadow brush
Angled blush brush
Blending eye brush
Complexion brush
Concealer brush
Contour brush
Flat eyeliner brush
Foundation brush
Lash & Brow comb
Lip brush
Powder brush
Smudge brush

Click here to check out ELF's new mineral brushes. (click on minerals and then brushes)

The ones that interest me are the blending eye brush and maybe the angled blush brush. I think I am going to wait and see what the youtube gurus think of these before I hop on the bandwagon. They do look good though, but I am still weeding through my Sigma brushes at the moment.

What do you girls think of these?

Monday, August 30, 2010

Review: Hard Candy Blush Crush Baked Blush in Honeymoon

hard candy honeymoon
It took Canada a long time, but we finally got Hard Candy at our Walmarts recently. For those that aren't familiar with Hard Candy, they used to be a more high-end brand that was sold at Sephora. I remember their nail polishes personally, the ones adorned with the plastic colourful rings. Now Hard Candy is exclusively sold at Walmart, and for affordable prices, and there are many products available.

Announcement: ELF Back To School 500 Follower Giveaway

I remember just a few months back I was celebrating 100 followers with my first contest. Now I am celebrating 500! How fast and awesome that this blog has grown in such little time. Thank you to everyone that reads it and contributes. I love talking about makeup and sharing my reviews with you girls!

This contest consists of ELF products, there will be ONE winner who will receive:
- ELF's Back To School Beauty Encyclopedia Smoky Eyes
- ELF Studio Cream Eyeliner in Ivory
- ELF Studio Powder Brush

The rules of the contest are:
- You must be a follower of this blog.
- Please enter a comment below saying what your favourite new beauty product is at the moment, this can be a newly released product or something that is simply new to you that you think I should try out. You do not have to include your email if you don't want to, but please have it listed on your blog so that I can contact you if you win.
- For an added entry please blog the first picture above on the sidebar of your blog or make a blog post about it and link me here.
- For another added entry, please follow me on Twitter and let me know below if you did and your link so that I can follow you back too.
- Contest begins today and runs for two weeks until Sept 13, 2010.
- Contest is open internationally.

Good luck to everyone and thank you for coming by my blog! :)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Review: Almay Smart Shade Smart Balance Makeup

almay smart shade smart balance makeup
Almay's Smart Shade Smart Balance Makeup is one of those skin matching foundations. This one is a step up from the Smart Shade makeup, this one claims to "keep your oily areas shine-free and dry skin softly hydrated." My skin is generally dry, but some areas like my chin can be oilier so I thought this may be good for me. I thought it was neat that this would provide moisture and oil control in one. Also, I LOVE the Revlon Skin Matching makeup, which I reviewed earlier, and thought maybe this would be a better colour match for me.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Sigma Makeup: Pink Travel Sized SS187 and SS224

Today I have a review for you of the two Sigma makeup mini travel sized brushes, the SS187 (now F50) and SS224 (E40). These are in pink, they can be bought as part of the Travel Kit Nice in Pink. I was sent these two products from Sigma for review consideration. I think the pink is cute, especially if you are younger and travel sized brushes are always good for travelling and on the go because they are smaller and with shorter handles.

First up is the Sigma 224 mini, which is now the E40 mini. This is a dupe of the MAC 224. It is a blending eye brush with black bristles. I don't have the MAC 224, but I did order the Sigma one recently so I will update this post once I get that in. I like that this doesn't flare out too much and it's pretty short too.

Here is a comparison of the SS188 (on left) and the SS187 mini (middle) and the MAC 187SE (right). As you can tell the SS187 mini is a lot smaller than the MAC, it is a lot closer to the SS188. I like it's a nice brush but because the white hairs are so long on this (or should I say the black ones are too short), it feels a lot floppier than the SS188 which makes it difficult to use for foundation application. So I am not a fan of this brush.

As you can tell here the Sigma Pink mini is a bit fuller than the SS188 (F55). These Sigma traveled sized brushes do not compare to the MAC SE brushes, at least not this brush in particular, and many people claim that the MAC SE's do not compare at all to the full sized ones.

Also, I've had a couple of questions regarding the Sigma gift that you get with purchase. It is true, you get a Sigma SS217 mini (E25) with every $30 order. It's a nice gift cause that brush is actually really nice, I have several of them now. The free brush will not show up in your shopping cart and you do not need a code or anything, but rest assured you will get it in your package.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Revlon Matte Lipsticks in Sky Pink and Stormy Pink

Recently while shopping at Walmart I noticed a brand new Revlon display for the Revlon Suede Rhapsody Fall/Winter collection. It was full of new matte lipsticks, matte nail polishes and eye products. I love the Revlon matte lipsticks so I was super excited about this. They had several lipsticks to choose from, but I picked out only two for now. I was with my bf and he makes snarky comments about me buying "more" makeup so I only got a few.

Like all Revlon matte lipsticks you have to be careful and either apply a lipbalm underneath and/or make sure your lips are hydrated because they can bring out the dryness of your lips. But I do like the matte finish because it means no shimmer or shine of any kind. These retail for about about $7 CAD at Walmart, this is the only place I've seen them so far. And I am surprised that no one else has talked about these yet. They are part of a Fall 2010 collection, not sure what the collection name is, if anyone knows please let me know!

revlon sky pink
The colours that I got were Sky Pink and Stormy Pink. Sky Pink is like a light pink with sort of peach undertones. It's a really beautiful colour. This could easily replace your baby pink or nude that you like wearing.

revlon stormy pink
Stormy Pink is a purple pink, looks more purple than the picture above, more mauve undertones in person. I like this one too. It's a lot more dramatic than Sky Pink, which is more for everyday wear.

Have you seen these new Relvon matte lipsticks in stores yet?

Thursday, August 26, 2010

MAC Utterly Game Mineralized Blush from Fabulous Felines

Yesterday the new MAC collection, Fabulous Felines launched online. I only picked up one item, I may get some pigments, but nothing else really interests me. However, I am a sucker for peach blushes so I HAD to get Utterly Game mineralized blush. This sells for $25 on the MAC Canada website and is described as a "warm peach with soft pearl". By the way if I haven't said it enough yet, I hate the new MAC Canada website it's totally user UNfriendly, I had to go on the MAC pro site to get this description because I couldn't even find it on our site, how annoying.

Anyway, Utterly Game is a peach colour, not too shimmery at all, very subtle once you swatch it and will give your cheeks a bit of a glow and who doesn't like that. I think this is a necessary peach blush to have in your collection.

Here are some of my MAC blushes that compare to Utterly Game. As you can tell Peaches is the most true peach you will get, I love this blush most of all, but Utterly Game is like a better slightly deeper (less orange) version of it. In comparison, Style is much more pigmented orange and mine is pretty gritty and powdery.

The non-flash version gives a better representation of the true colour, as you can tell in the image above. The consistency of Utterly Game is great too, very smooth, applies well.  Apparently it's comparable to Ripe Peach too, I do not have that one so I can't compare, but it looks reasonable.  I think this blush is the standout winner of the collection, as least for me.

Did you pick up Utterly Game? What's your favourite MAC peach blush?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hautelook: Urban Decay Sale Up to 75% Off (Starting August 25th at 8AM PT)

Hautelook is going to have a sale on Urban Decay products today, this sale starts at 8am PT, that's 11am ET (my time zone). I don't know what specific items will be included in this sale, but the update says "Up to 75% off colorful makeup palettes". So that sounds promising!

If you aren't familiar with Hautelook, they are basically a website that sells popular brands at very discounted prices during their short sales which normally last only 48 hours. For every person you refer, you get $10 in your account. :)

If you'd like to join Hautelook, please click here.

Review: ELF Studio Eyeshadows

A few days ago I brought you a review of ELF's Studio Blushes, today it's their Single Eyeshadows. I have 5 of the 10 available on the ELF website. These retail for $3 and are a great value for what you get. ELF's website describes these as "The beautiful soft texture melts into the skin for a vibrant color that lasts. Convenient and easy to apply, just layer the color to achieve the desired intensity. Apply wet or dry for a fabulous look that never creases or fades." I would suggest to always use a primer under your eyeshadows, I do that with every shadow regardless of whether it's cheap or expensive.

The packaging of these is almost half the size of the blushes, however judging by the size listed on the back label, you get the same amount of product, 2.75g. They come in the standard Studio line back packaging and have a little window (and mirror inside) which is helpful that way you can find the shadow you want easily without having to look at the name on the back. No sponge applicators in these, cause you will just throw them away anyway. Most, if not all these shadows contain shimmers, but they are not gritty to the touch, the consistency of these is pretty good, they do not feel overly powdery or chalky. They are very blendable, pigmented and have good colour payoff, they do come out a bit more vibrant when used with a base. I find the best way to apply these is to dab the colour on with your brush, do not sweep too much.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

New MAC Canada site: Maccosmetics.ca is now Maccosmetics.com

So all week I've been getting redirected to the MAC US site instead of the MAC Canada site. I am in Canada, so I've always been looking and ordering off that one. Anyway, I thought I was going crazy and then tonight I looked around a bit more and noticed that the prices are in CAD! So this is the new site.. oh gawd help us all!

I hate the design of the MAC US site, it's all jumbled up and ugly. If you don't know what I am talking about the former Canadian MAC site had a white background and was the 'old' MAC Cosmetics US before they switched over like a year ago. I wish I had taken a screenshot so I could of shown you, it was easy to find stuff on and was just more of a user-friendly design. So for my Canadian readers who were confused like me, there must be someone, you are seeing it right, this is our new site. You can change the location on the bottom right and see this is also the Canadian and pretty much global site. Big thumbs down MAC.

Sigma Makeup: Latest Haul with Eye and Face Brushes First Impressions

Okay I am officially Sigma-obsessed, I got another order in the mail today, this one has some face and eye brushes. I initially only ordered their face brushes, but picked up a few eye ones this time around to try out. This post is to give you girls my first impressions of these brushes. I like to try stuff out before I review it, so that way I give an honest and detailed review, but just getting stuff is so exciting so I have to post here. Honestly, now I own almost all of them and wish I had just bought the kits instead of individually because I did end up liking them a lot more than I thought I would. I have no need or crave to buy MAC brushes anymore, these perform wonderfully and have become my everyday brushes.

The Sigma F40 is their large angled contour brush, it has white goat hair. It can be used to apply blush (which I would use it for) or bronzer. This is a dupe of the MAC 168. It's as soft as everyone says it is.

Sigma E50 is the large fluff eyeshadow brush. This baby is huge, it can cover my entire eyelid. This can be used for a wash of colour on your lids. This is comparable to the MAC 227. My first impression of this brush is that it sheds hair like a monster! I hope this dies down after I wash it, or else I may be contacting Sigma regarding this. I haven't washed it yet, just touching the bristles and examining it, I keep pulling out hairs, probably like 10-20 already.

Sigma F75 is their concealer brush, it is tapered and has orange synthetic hair. It can be used for placing and blending concealer on the face. I will probably use it to tap concealer under the eyes. It's a nice size, I wish it were a bit firmer, but it's okay, good for delicate areas. It's a dupe for the MAC 195, looks completely identical to it.

The Sigma E35 is the tapered blending brush. It's made of goat hair and can be used for blending eyeshadow or blending in concealer under the eyes (which I will probably use it for). It's very soft, however the bristles are much more fluffy than the MAC 222 (which this is a dupe of). This is like a longer version of the Sigma E25. This reminds me of a white MAC 224 brush moreso. With this brush, Sigma did not get this brush dupe quite right in my opinion.

Sigma E45 is a small tapered blending brush for eyes. This can be used for placing eyeshadow in the crease and blending it. I was surprised how pointy and precise this brush is, it is really well made. This is a dupe of the MAC 226 which was limited edition and is not available anymore. I don't have that brush, but judging from pictures, this Sigma one seems a lot more pointy.

Do you have any of these brushes? Which ones are you planning to get?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Review: ELF Studio Blushes

ELF's studio blushes are really nice and cheap, they sell for $3 on the ELF website. I have five (9 available) of them here to show you and review. The websites describes these as "The soft sheer texture blends into the skin for a silky finish. Designed to be worn alone or layered for more depth. Highlight your complexion with a subtle healthy glow!" I think these are quite sheer and need to be built up, they aren't like one sweep compared to MAC and other high-end blushes. I like that because I don't like overdoing much, it can be a pain to remove when you've finished your makeup and have to redo everything. The packaging on these is the sleek back that is present on all studio line products, you get a small mirror inside too. These come with 2.75g.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

MAC Warehouse Sale: Toronto Sept 10-12, 2010

MAC Cosmetics is once again holding their warehouse sale in Markham Ontario (close to Toronto) on Friday, September 10, 2010 and Sunday, September 12, 2010. Tickets are only available to Estee Lauder and MAC employees, however if you know someone or are friends with someone, you can get these tickets too. These are held 4x a year: January, June, September and December.

Lots of people sell them on the usual websites: Ebay, Kijiji, Craigslist and so on. Be careful and make sure that you get legit sellers and legit tickets, I have heard of people buying tickets and they were fake, so please buy from a reliable source.

More details of the sale:
When: Friday, Sept 10-Sunday, Sept 12, 2010

Where: Markham Fairgrounds, Ontario

What: Great discounted prices on MAC and other Estee Lauder brands.

I have never gone to one of these, I stay away on purpose because I know I would do lots of damage! But, if anyone does pick up extras of anything and wants to sell items, please contact me cause I am always interested in buying a few items. :)

Some items that I am looking for:
Lavender Whip lipstick
Brunette MSF
Pigments in old packaging: Circa Plum, Mauvement..
Emote blush

Anyone planning on going to this?

Review: ELF HD High Definition Powder

I got this powder free with purchase a couple months back when it first came out. It's definitely one of ELF's most popular products and is often out of stock. I use this to set my makeup, it keeps it in place and gives a smooth finish. My face is dry and not very pore-filled, so I don't really need a powder like this, but I like having it. I do not have the MAC Prep and Prime to compare it to, I don't see a need for these products to be honest, I think most powders will set your makeup just fine.

The ELF HD powder sells for $6 on the ELF website, it's one of their more expensive items. It comes in a sleek, but bulky black packaging with a sifter and puff inside. The cover clicks when you turn it around a couple of times, which is nice that way you know it won't spill all over the place. I would suggest keeping the sticker on top of the sifter (poke some holes into it or half it half off), that will prevent too much product from coming out. The packaging claims that this product gives your face a "soft focus" effect, masking the fine lines and imperfections for a radiant complexion. It's soft and invisible, however be careful to not over-apply this. It is a white micro-fine powder, but once you blend it in, you can't see it, only the effects that it gives, which is a blurring effect to camouflage your pores and lines.

I just shake the container (with it closed or the puff over it) and then open it and whatever is on the puff I apply. Or you can also take some out onto the inside lid and use a brush to apply it to your face, that is my preferred method. Make sure you use a rolling method when to apply this, that way it sinks into your skin well. Most HD powders on the market has similar ingredients, this ELF one has Dimethicone as the primary, then silica. Whereas the Makeup Forever one for example is 100% silica. The other fault that I find with this packaging is the opening where the powder is, is huge basically the entire size of the box, they could of made the opening a tad smaller.

Overall, I think this is a good product and for the price it really can't be beat, it's a fraction of the price of high-end HD powders. I think ELF did a fabulous job with this product. The price is awesome and it will last you ages. I would recommend this specifically for those with skin that tends more on the oily side, for dry skin, I wouldn't use this very often as it may irritate your skin.

Have you used this? How do you think it compares to other HD powders?