Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Urban Decay Cosmetics Shadow Box Review and Swatches!

Hello there lovelies. I hope you had a wonderful holiday season. Mine was a whirlwind. I feel like it just raced by. I can't wait to begin another wonderful New Year. What are some of your goals and hopes for the new year?

Today I am here to do a review on a product I picked up a little over a month ago. I am a huge fan of Urban Decay products and am an Urban Decay Eyeshadow Palette Hoarder! I admit it, it's a problem. It is one company that I am okay with splurging for. When I saw that they released an eyeshadow palette with 12 of their best sellers in it I immediately got excited. I got even more excited when I saw the $34 price tag which is pretty affordable for the brand.

Like I said the palette comes with 12 of their best selling eyeshadow shades which you can buy full size in singular form. Urban Decay Eyeshadows are normally $18 a piece and you get .05 oz in each one.


This palette is a cardboard type packaging with a magnetic hinge closure. I love the detail on this and I think it is beautiful. I wish the packaging was a little more durable though because I don't think this could withstand any major travel or any jostling around in a bag or anything. 

I like that there is a mirror as well. The one thing that really surprised me was the size. I ordered this off of the Ulta website so I didn't really know how big it would be. It is pretty small. I would say the size of a small envelope and the eyeshadow pans are also pretty tiny. I'll show you in comparison to one of my eyeshadow brushes. If you are using this on a daily basis it may go quicker than you'd think. Thank goodness they all come in a normal size if you run out. 


This was also something I found disappointing. I am usually a huge fan of Urban Decay because their shadows are so creamy and pigmented but this palette seemed to have a very powdery texture. I had fallout with most of these shades and found that if I didn't use a light hand with my brush that it produced a lot of kick up. However, I didn't see a lot of fallout when I used a cream base underneath like a Maybelline Color Tattoo or my Jordana Eyeshadow Pencil.


Swatches of the top row over the Revlon Photoready Primer
Swatches of the bottom row of shades. 

The pigmentation is still pretty good. Urban Decay usually doesn't drop the ball in this area. The colors applied true to color and blended nicely. I like that you get a variety of colors in this palette. You have all the tools to create a natural look or something more colorful. However, the downside is that all of these are a shimmer/glitter finish. The only matte shade is Blackout.I wish they had thrown in at least one matte brown shadow so you could create a good blending shade or depth. Some perform absolutely beautifully and others are not very good at all. 

My favorites from the palette are Mushroom, Indo, and Baked Cowboy. My least favorite are Freelove, Bordello, and Flash. 

Overall Verdict:

As a whole I think this is a good palette if you need something with a variety of color options and you want to try some of the popular Urban Decay shades. It is a nice little palette to have in your collection however, I think you'd be better off splurging on the Vice 3 Palette. It has much larger shadows and a very wide range of shades that all perform gorgeously. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

November 2014 Makeup and Skincare Favorites and Fails!

Hello there beauties. I hope you have been having a wonderful fall season and that you had an amazing Thanksgiving. I can't believe that the snow is falling in NY already and that the Christmas trees are up but alas it is winter time.

Another lovely fall season is behind us and I am here to tell you about some products that I have gotten a lot of use out of in the fall this year. I also have some products that were just downright horrible. Now keep in mind that I am in no means speaking for everyone here and that these opinons are based only on how they worked for me. So if you really love one of the products I didn't like...well, than I am glad someone is around to make it feel wanted.

Let's start off with the favorites shall we?

Kirkland Daily Facial Towlettes $11.99 at CostCo

So I can thank the lovely ladies over at Eleventh Gorgeous for this lovely find. I have been on the hunt for a while now for a decent affordable makeup wipe. Preferably one that doesn't make my eyes feel like they are burning out of my head (we'll get to that in my fails). Now though I love to try and wash my face the old fashion know in the sink...truth is some days I just don't have the energy or the time to do all 100 steps of my optimal skincare routine. So on those lazy days I like to use a makeup wipe to do the brunt of the work. I bought these because with a price tag of $12 for 150 wipes I figured I couldn't lose. When I don't like a wipe it goes in to my "wipes for removing swatches on random parts of my body," drawer. These wipes are AMAZING!! They work so well to remove dirt and makeup plus they don't both my skin or eyes. I also love that they are paraben free and have chamomile and aloe to soothe my ever drying skin. You need these trust me. Get them here with free delivery!

Elf Baked Highlighter in Moonlit Pearl $3 

I'm not going to go in to too much detail since I did a full review on this a while ago which you can read by clicking here! All I can say is that I am sad that this got pushed to the back of a drawer and forgotten about because it is gorgeous. I dug it out in the beginning of the month and used it almost everyday. It is hands down the best $3 highlight I have ever found. I am a huge fan of all 3 colors but I just have been gearing towards this one the most this month. 

NYX Butter Lip Balm in Brownie $4

Sometimes in the winter my lips are just too dry and flaky for regular lipstick so I tend to gear more towards a tinted balm or gloss. Recently I picked up a couple of the NYX Butter Lip Balms while at Ulta. I am already a huge fan of the Butter Glosses so I figured these would be nice for the upcoming months. I really really like them. They are comfortable, hydrating, and give just enough color to give the lips a little life. Brownie has been my favorite and is that "Kylie Lip Jenner," type color.

Elf High Definition Powder $6

I love this powder. I wish we had become friends earlier because I would have saved A LOT of money. I have it in the sheer formula which is translucent. It is so finely milled and it just so soft and smooth. I use this almost everyday to set my foundation and it just gives such a flawless finish. I don't look cakey and gross like a lot of powders make me feel. I own the Make Up Forever HD Powder and I can honestly say that this is almost an exact dupe but at a way better price point. Plus this jar will last me FOREVER since a little goes a long way. 

I also would like to list the powder puff as a favorite as well. I have very red cheeks all the time and I hate when I put on a full face of foundation and then use a fluffy brush to set with powder and all of a sudden my red cheeks are back. I saw a video on Wayne Goss's channel a while ago that changed my life. Watch it here and you'll see why! This puff works great for this trick!!

Beauty Blender $20

beautyblender - the original beautyblender®
I was fighting this purchase for soooo long and now I could fight myself for not getting it sooner. I completely thought this product was a gimmick. I figured it was just one of those things that people were making a fuss out of that really wasn't worth it. I mean in my mind I was thinking it was just a glorified $20 sponge. I mean it is exactly that but it is soooo much more. This makes foundation application so beautiful and natural but I love it mostly for how seamless and easy it makes your concealer apply. Shame on me for waiting...shame shame. 

Dr.Lipp Original Nipple Balm For Lips $15

Dr. Lipp Original Nipple Balm for Lips
You need this!! Just believe me. This is an amazing lip balm. I received this in a Birchbox and I loved it. It made my lips feels so soft and supple and really helped how my lipstick looked. It is a bit sticky but it is so effective. It helps to heal and protect the lips. Worth every penny. 

Clinique Take The Day Off For Lids, Lashes, & Lips $18

This is my new go to eye makeup remover. It is a little bit more than I typically like spending on a product like this but it just works so well. It literally just melts off every type of makeup. Eyeliner, waterproof mascara, lip name it and it will remove it. I also love that it is gentle and doesn't irritate my eyes. Honestly, I can see this lasting me quite a long time so I don't think the $18 cost is all that bad. 

Clinique All About Eyes Rich $30

I really should have listened to the magazines growing up when they said to start using an eye cream as early as 15 because I am seeing such a difference since I started using one. Not only do my eyes look less tired but they are much more hydrated and I can see a decrease in fine lines under my eyes. My concealer looks way better these days. I love the rich creamy feel of this eye cream especially since my eyes tend to be dry this time of year. I put this on at night and it makes my eye area feel so soft and smooth in the morning. 

H20 Plus Hydrating Treatment $36

You guys this moisturizer is like nothing I have ever used before. When I got this in my Ipsy bag a while back I was not excited about it at all but from the first time I used it I knew it was love. It has the coolest (literally) texture. It feels like you are splashing your face with water when you apply this. It is so soothing and cooling. I like to use this as my morning moisturizer because it absorbs really quickly due to the gel formula. It also doesn't make your face feel heavy after you put your makeup and stuff on. I can't wait to get my full size jar in the mail. This would work well for those with oily or dry skin. 


Now for the products I didn't like this month.....

Be A Bombshell Lash Out Mascara

Oyyy where to begin with this one. I received this a couple months ago in an Ipsy bag and tucked it away in my makeup drawer. I finally pulled it out this month to test it out. The first thing I noticed right away was the smell. It is such a strong chemical smell that I could immediently smell it when I opened the tube. It smells like burnt tires and pool floaties. It is awful. Now who would want to put something by there eye that smells like that? Secondly this mascara was so dry I couldn't even get a good coat if I wanted to. This mascara was just a big ol fail for me. 

Physicians Formula Sexy Booster Oh La La Liquid Liner 

This was another product that I bought and forgot about for like a month. I got this in the Sexy Booster Eye Trio Set. This is yet another product that just didn't do anything for me. It is incredibly watery. Even after following the instructions to shake it and then blot it on a tissue 3 times it still comes out like light gray water. It bleeds so much that when I try to use it it gets all over my fingers like a pen that has exploded. Not only that but as you can imagine it's watery consistency makes it very poorly pigmented. 

Almay Oil-Free Makeup Remover Towelettes $6.49

Remember when I said I was glad that I found a makeup removing towelette that didn't bother my eyes? That's because these made my eyes feel like hot lava. They burned my eyes so bad which surprised me since I usually associate Almay with being very gentle on the skin. Even when I didn't use them to remove eye makeup and only used them for lipstick or my face it still affected my eyes. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Smashbox On The Rocks Photo Op Eye Shadow Luxe Palette Review, Pictures, and Swatches.

I love the Holidays. I love all the Christmas brings. I always hear people grumbling when the holiday seasons come around but I happen to really enjoy them. I think every beauty lover likes the holidays even more because of all the makeup deals that happen this time of year. You have loads of website sales but this is also the time of year when all the companies put out there array of holiday sets. Holiday sets make me happy because they are usually way cheaper than the products are normally. If you have read my blog for a while then you know that I am all about affordable makeup. High end makeup does not typically fit into my low end budget but the holiday sets that the highend brands put out usually are within my financial reach. It's a great way to try out products before committing to buying them full price and full size.

Though I am usually a drugstore girl there are times when I splurge and get high end products. One brand that I have always been quite fond of in the snazzy makeup world is Smashbox.

I got one of their eye shadow palettes years ago as a gift and fell in love. I think I own most of their larger eyeshadow palettes at this point and I have never regretted buying a single one. Their eye shadows have always performed beautifully and have always been great quality. So of course when I say their holiday lineup the Luxe palette immediately called out to me. For one the packaging is just gorgeous. I love the jewel theme both on the outside and on the inside with the little gem in the middle of the palette. It is classy and hones in on all the things a girl and makeup!!

The palette is only available at Ulta store or at! It is $42 and comes with 28 eye shadows. The shadows are a decent size. I would say they are about the size of a postage stamp or .04 oz each to be specific.

The packaging isn't the most durable but I still like it. It is a cardboard packaging kind of like the Naked palettes if you have ever seen those. It has a magnetic clasp at the front to help keep it from opening randomly. I love the jewel holographics on the front. I'd say this would be a good palette for light traveling however, I wouldn't bring it anywhere your bags could get thrown around.

You get quite an array of colors and finishes in this palette. There are mattes, satin finishes, and even some very shimmery shades. I love that you get some bright colors and plenty of neutrals so you could really create quite a few looks with this. I also love that it comes with awesome matte blending and highlighting shades. I can't stand when palettes don't have at least one good shade for the brow bone.

Because the palette is kind of strangely configured I went ahead and numbered the shades. I will list them below and give them a rating based on how I thought they performed. Not all of these shades wowed my pants off. Actually there were quite a few that disappointed me which hardly ever happens in a Smashbox palette.

1. Marzipan- A flesh tone matte shade. A terrific brow bone highlight. A+
2. Ambient- A warm bronzey brown with a shimmer finish. A
3. Midas- A shimmering taupe. Kind of chalky and a little hard to build color. B-
4. Zoom- An olive green shimmer. Beautiful shade but it does create some fallout. B
5. Totally Nude- A matte tan. Great color for blending in the crease. A+
6. Fizz- A light brown shimmer. Creamy and beautiful. A
7. Cream- Ivory shimmer shade. A
8. Roast- Deep dark brown with gold microglitter. A
9. Sumatra- Matte chocolate brown. Didn't apply evenly. Very hard to blend. D
10. Sable- Matte light brown. Creamy and a great blending shade. A
11. Juniper- A purple toned shimmering taupe. A
12. Lavender- A light purple shimmer. Powdery and not very pigmented. B-
13. Purple Mist- A deep purple with gold micro glitter. Hard texture and chalky. Hard to work with.
14. Pastel- A light satin finish pink. A
15. Peacock- A beautiful shimmering teal. A+ one of my favorites in the palette.
16. Sapphires- a shimmering midnight blue. Hard to apply evenly. Patchy. B-
17. Navy- A deep matte blue. A
18. Lilac- a cool tone shimmering purple. Another favorite. A
19. Royal- A deep matte purple. Didn't swatch very well but it is a great texture and a great defining shade. A
20. Snow- A matte white. A
21. Asteroid- A deep shimmering grey. Creates a lot of fall out. Powdery. B
22. Gypsy- A dark charcoal with silver micro glitter. A
23. Babycakes- A peachy satin shade. A
24. Moonlight- My least favorite shade. I don't even know what it's supposed to be. It just comes off as a powdery glitter. Creates crazy fallout. You need a tacky primer for sure.
25. Framboise- A deep pinky burgundy. A gorgeous fall shade. I love this as a blending color. A
26. Smoke- A deep charcoal matte. Gorgeous for a deep "smoke"y eye. A
27. Mink- A deep shimmering taupe. A
28. Cabernet- A satin finish burgundy shade. Gorgeous A+
Left to right: Marzipan, Ambient, Midas, and Zoom
Left to right: Totally Nude, Fizz, Cream, and Roast
Left to right: Sumatra and Sable
From left to right: Juniper, Lavender, Purple Mist, and Pastel.
Peacock, Sapphires, Navy, and Lilac. 
Royal, Snow, Asteroid, and Gypsy. 
Babycakes, Moonlit, Framboise, and Smoke. 
Mink and Cabernet
So there are some definite winners and some ones that are really not that great. I think overall it is not a bad palette but I think there are some better Smashbox palettes out there. I really really like the Masterclass palettes. I just got the Masterclass III palette and I think it's really great. You get one side that's bright colors and one side that is more neutral plus you get blushes and bronzers and it's just an amazing palette. This one is good and I think it's worth the money but I don't think it's their best work.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

BH Cosmetics Wild at Heart and Wild & Free Baked Eyeshadow Palette Review and Swatches!

Hey there pretty people! I hope everyone is doing well today. Thank you for visiting my blog and thank you for being so amazing! Today I am writing a post on what may be my newest eyeshadow palette obsession. You'll see in a minute why these new BH Cosmetics palettes are my everything right now!

BH Cosmetics if you aren't familiar with the company is an affordable online makeup brand. They are typically best known for their large eyeshadow palettes that seriously have like 88 colors in one palette. I got these years ago when I was first learning about makeup and teaching myself proper applications. They are great palettes for beginners but were never really the best quality. However, in the last year or so BH has come out with some really phenomenal palettes. I have done a couple reviews on other palettes of theirs on the blog before! You can check those out by clicking the links below.

BH Cosmetics Take Me To Brazil Palette
BH Cosmetics Eyes On The 60's Eyeshadow Palette

They recently released 3 new baked eyeshadow palettes. I picked up 2 of them to begin with which are the Wild at Heart Palette and the Wild & Free Palette. There is one more which is called Wild Child but I chose not to get that one because it had very neutral colors which I am sure I have dupes of in my collection somewhere. They are anywhere from $12- $10 right now on the website which is an amazing price. You can check them all out by clicking here!

Wild & Free

Wild & Free is a perfect fall palette. It has green bronze, green, and blue tones to it. You really could create so many looks with this palette whether you want to play with color or so something more subtle. I have been getting a lot of use out of this palette lately. I love the versatility in here because you get highlight shades, crease colors, and even some colors to deepen up a look. 
 This is the top 3 swatched over the E.l.f Essentials primer. I did all the swatches over that primer.
 The three middle shades.
The bottom three shades.
This is all of the shades. 

These are swatches over a primer and as you can see the color pay off is out of this world. Baked eyeshadows and I have had a rocky relationship in the past. I always love how the colors look when I swatch them but it is usually very hard to get a good pigmented application without using them wet. These are the first baked eyeshadows in a while that I have not had to mess around with in order to get them to work. I do recommend using a primer with them to give more longevity to the wear. 

The texture isn't overly dry and they apply smooth and creamy. I found that the wear time for these was pretty great too. I didn't start to see any fading until about 6 hours of wear which is pretty typically for most shadows. The finish of all of these is a metallic or shimmer finish so if you are not a fan of those types of shadows than I don't think this will be a palette for you. 

I could use a little improvement on the packaging. These are definitely not intended for travel. The palette is cardboard and with baked eyeshadows typically being more delicate I wouldn't risk putting them in any bad that gets tossed around like a purse or luggage. I do wish they would put these in a little more durable package but I guess for the price I can live with it. I do like that you get a decent sized mirror in the palette. I for one typically use a hand help mirror during application so this makes my life much easier. 

Overall this palette gets a gold star from me. I think it is a wonderful little gem to have in your makeup stash and I can see myself getting a lot of use out of this.

Wild at Heart

Wild at Heart is the palette that originally caught my eye. I love purple eyeshadow so much that it's a problem. If a palette has beautiful purple shades in it than I have to have it. Wild at Heart has gorgeous purples, pinks, and some soft neutral shades in it. It is a great palette for green and blue eyes. I love the soft romantic feel of this one. Yet again you get plenty of colors to do a variety of looks. There are some highlight shades, some great crease colors, and some darker colors for a more dramatic look. 
This is the top row swatched over the E.l.f Essentials primer. All the colors were swatched over the same primer.
 Middle row
Top row

Like the other palette you get some amazing intensity with these. You don't need to use them wet to get great pigmentation. They apply smooth and are easy to work with. Like the other palette these all have a frosty/metallic finish so if you aren't a fan of that than you won't love this one either. 
I am also a really big fan of this palette as well. I think for the price it is an amazing find. The pans are also a great size. Each pan is a little smaller than a quarter so you are getting quite a bit of product in these. 

Overall I think both of these are definitely worth the money. I really have nothing bad to say about them to be honest. I love the shade ranges, the pigmentation, and the wear time. Those are all 3 important factors for me and it passed the test. I am going to have to get the third one now. Do you own any of these? What are your thoughts about them?