Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Lippies Experiment: Final FOTDs!

Guys, I did it! I wore all my lippies this month! HURRAY! Let's see how the last few panned out.

What do you mean I can't have a bunny?
Clinique After Party: This is a delightful vampy plum, with one caveat: gold shimmer. So much gold shimmer. It doesn't migrate, thankfully, but it does remain after the lipstick wears off. The formula also isn't moisturizing, so after a full day of wearing just this, my lips were quite chapped. And very shimmery. I think it's a lippie I'll keep in mind for shorter events––it looks awesome for a couple of hours, and my lips can survive that long just fine. Definitely has inspired me to get another non-shimmery vamp, though! Got my eye on Hourglass Empress.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday Summary

First off, I want to thank everyone for your kind comments on my most recent post. I really, really appreciate them, even if I'm putting off replying to them because I don't know how to express my gratitude (also, social anxiety). I'm still feeling a little blue, and more than a little overwhelmed, but I'm trying to just keep myself in the relative present. Here are some things that have helped:

Tea! I ordered a bunch of loose tea samples from Adagio, since there's not really anyplace in Eugene that sells a wide variety, and have slowly been sipping my way through them. I'm drinking the Spiced Maté right now (also pictured to the right), but I've also really enjoyed the Rooibos Lemon Cloud, Rooibos Earl Grey, Rooibos Chai (I like rooibos tea, clearly!), and black Earl Grey Lavender. I've placed another order with some more flavors, particularly more black teas because I've realized that tea provides some much-needed caffeine on early mornings and upsets my stomach much less than does coffee. I really like the Adagio website––it's sensibly organized, has pretty visuals, provides lots of information, and the tea is so affordable! Sample bags are $2 for enough tea to make 10 cups, and even with my 12 oz tea mug that's still nearly 7 cups' worth. Relatedly, I am also enjoying lactose-free milk. Thanks, world.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Depression and Generosity

The past week hasn't really been happy fun times at Amy central.

Nearly Perfect Lashes: Maybelline Full N Soft Very Black Review and Swatches

There are many things about my appearance that I might change, given the choice (not having to pluck my brows would be great, not to mention some way to fix my skin!), but my lashes are not one of them. They're long, dark, thick, and hardy. They are not, however, particularly curly, but I have my kickass lash curler for that. My goal when using mascara is to lengthen, separate, and darken yet further, since in the course of applying eyeshadow and face powder I inevitably end up with product on my lashes. There's a lot of things I don't want, including (but probably not limited to) crunchy lashes, clumps, sad spindly lashes, smudges, flakes, and jabby mascara wands; my goal is always my lashes but better, natural and believable. My absolute HG mascara is Armani Eyes to Kill, but at $30 a tube, it's not something I can repurchase lightly, so when it finally dried up on me I decided to start hunting for a cheaper alternative. I picked up Maybelline Full N Soft, as I remembered liking it when I used it several years ago, apparently forgetting about the 3 sample tubes of mascara I have waiting for me to try. Ah well, at least I used +Up rewards so it ended up being free...

Monday, October 22, 2012

Manicure Monday

I got through 6 unworns this week! Yippee!

Sinful Colors What's Your Number
I got this awhile back to use in nail polish jewelry for galaxies, but hadn't yet worn it. It's a really nicely opaque black with duochrome shimmers that shift from turquoise to purple. You can see the shimmer inside, though the duochrome is really only evident in the sun when you tilt your nails. Formula was good, opaque in two coats, though I had noticeable tipwear after less than a day (see photo).

Friday, October 19, 2012

Fragrance Friday

Another week nearly done. Fridays are my hell days, but at least tomorrow is the weekend! Things I've worn this week and found particularly noteworthy, many of which are very rose-centric, because it turns out I like some (but definitely not all) rose perfumes:

L'Artisan Safran Troublant (Oriental Spicy: passion flower, sandalwood, rose, vanilla, saffron, sugar, ginger): Tried this because Ari of Scents of Self loves it, and I must say I agree. It's really a gorgeous scent, a soft oriental rose, all sweet and friendly and just beautiful. Not interesting enough to be HG for me, but definitely one I would deem FB worthy if I had the money. As it is, I'll continue ordering samples of it from Aedes, my perfume heroes.

Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady (Oriental Floral: rose, raspberry, patchouli, incense, sandalwood, clove, black currant, cinnamon, benzoin, amber, musk): Got this to try and see if I like rose and patchouli together; based on a sample size of 1, I'll have to say no. The first couple hours are just PATCHOULI of the earthy sort (and being a native Eugenean, I am well familiar with patchouli, but I can't say I love it on its own), and over time the rose becomes more apparent, but it's the sharp kind of rose I don't love. Not a success for me, but maybe it would be better sprayed (I just dabbed it). We'll see.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Lippies Experiment: More FOTDs!

I've been making good progress through my lippies this month; I haven't been great about photographing all of them, so this post is a little lacking in photos (4 days missing, my bad), but I have included notes about what I wore.

Wednesday, October 10

Clarins Colour Quench Lip Balm 04 Coral Pink, NARS Deep Throat, Too Faced Heaven, Honey Pot, WNW Comfort Zone 3rd green, Laura Mercier mascara. This was a nice warm but natural summer look, for one of the last sunny days (though shockingly, it was sunny yesterday and today as well! The sun hasn't abandoned us yet!). The Clarins gloss is really comfortable, albeit none too long-lasting, and very natural. The WNW green shadow was intended to match my shirt, but I found the texture to be dry and it really didn't want to apply evenly. Now I'm on the hunt for a good green palette! Suggestions are welcome.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lashes as Curly as My Hair: Shiseido Eyelash Curler Review and Pictures

Okay, quick rundown of my lashes: They're long, dark, thick, but lacking in curl (because apparently my hair stole the whole allotment), and I find that unless I curl my lashes with a dedicated curler, they bump against my glasses lenses endlessly. I used to use Tarte's curler, because I would buy it in the duo with the mascara mini, which my mother adores, but I've been feeling like trying something else and leaving the Tarte one behind on the East Coast somewhere gave me kick in the butt I needed to find something new. (I've also tried Revlon curlers in the past, but found them to be lacking.) At Larie's suggestion, I opted for Shiseido's over Shu Uemura's, because of the refillable pads, not to mention the fact that I could just jaunt right down to the mall and pick it up, rather than having to wait for shipping. Herewith, my thoughts.
A super-artsy shot by yours truly

Monday, October 15, 2012

Manicure Monday

More manicures! This is going to be brief, again, because I have a bunch of quizzes to grade and a sure-to-be-confusing syntax article to read (the life of a grad student is just an endless party, y'all).

OPI Every Month is Oktoberfest
I caved and bought this when I spotted it in New York. Yes, I hate OPI's terrible punny names, but the color is SO GORGEOUS. And after using it, I have to say the OPI formula (okay, based on a sample size of 1, so take it with a grain of salt) is fantastic. I will be paying more attention to their other collections now! And I will be wearing this polish all the freaking time.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Guest Post at Eye Heart It!

Hey! Y'all should go check out my guest post (Polishes for a Rainy Day) on Eye Heart It! Larie is honeymooning and asked me to fill in for a day, which I of course gladly did, since Eye Heart It is one of my blogging ideals, and Larie is just the loveliest person. A teaser:

Friday, October 12, 2012

Fragrance Friday

A bunch of quick reviews, because I'm too busy to be my normal verbose self (at least, for some of these scents!). This week's focus is indie fragrance oils, with a couple rose-focused niche perfumes thrown in for good measure.

Solstice Scents Manor* perfume oil (woody-vanilla musk, vanilla, oud x2): Delicious vanilla-woods-oud, impressive longevity, gorgeous scent, I adore. I have a sizable order planned from Solstice Scents for next month! (I'm hoping to be able to take the last couple weeks of this month reacquainting myself with my [frighteningly large] sample collection.)

Amouage Epic Woman (Oriental Floral: caraway, pink pepper, cinnamon, rose, geranium, jasmine, tea, amber, vanilla, incense, orris root, patchouli, oud): The last Amouage female scent available at Aedes I had left to try! This is a rose oud, and a very opulent one at that. I'm pretty terrible at describing Amouage scents, because they always have so much going on, but basically, it starts out being quite rose-heavy, but it's the sharp kind of rose I don't get along with well. Then it segues into a rose-oud balance, which is quite nice and reminds me of By Kilian Rose Oud, L'Artisan Safran Troublant, and the like, before becoming pretty much pure oud, with that slight acridity that oud sometimes has. I've only worn it the one time, and that only dabbed, so we'll see how I feel when it's sprayed, but at this point I prefer Amouage's other rose-centric perfume, Lyric, not to mention Rose Oud/Safran Troublant. Memoir Woman is the only Amouage that I really, really like, but I (sadly? or happily, given how expensive they are?) don't think I love any of them at this point. Yet more evidence that I am not a true perfumista! *sob*

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Lippies Experiment: FOTDs

I've been making some progress in wearing all my lippies this month. Here's the looks I've done the past week-plus! Only...a lot of lippies left.


I started with Tarte LipSurgence in Glitzy, the only LipSurgence left in my collection. I'd held on to it because I didn't have anything else like it––it's a beigey pink base with gold glitter––but it's also a shade I definitely have to work around to not have it clash on my face. I wore Maybelline Barely Beige, L'Oreal Iced Latte, and L'Oreal Bronzed Taupe on my eyes and NYX Marbella blush on my cheeks, and I quite liked the warmer-but-still-natural look. Unfortunately, the LipSurgence cap cracked sometime during the day, and that, coupled with the gritty feeling (and the fact that it's not actually all that different looking on than Le Métier Purple Haze) has led me to put it in the discard pile.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Manicure Monday

Yay, yet another alliterative feature on the blog! Manicure Mondays are when I plan to show the previously-unshown polishes in my collection that I've managed to wear the week before. This past week I only wore 2, and each only for a day, because pretty much from Thursday on I was completely swamped in work. But the two I wore are super gorge! And both discontinued and somewhat HTF. Sorry.

Sally Hansen Nail Prisms in Golden Tourmaline
A red holo! The pigmentation on this is insane––this is one coat. ONE COAT. FOR A HOLO. Not to mention IT'S A RED HOLO! It's not as holographic as others from the line, but I'm willing to forgive it because it's red and so pigmented. I took these pictures a day after I applied it (well, okay, more like 18 hours), and it was already showing tipwear, but that may be due to my crappy nails or the base/top coat I used. I love it no less. (Also, most MMs will be taken the day after application, which helps give some idea of how well the polish wears, but I apologize for the inevitable tipwear-filled photos!)

Inglot EOTDs

These are a little belated, as I'm generally pretty harried in the morning so I don't remember to take photos, but I managed to get my act together 3 days, so here they are! I've made note of what I wore where; all looks feature lashes curled courtesy of Shiseido's lash curler and Maybelline Full N Soft mascara.

Look 1: The Pretty Peacock
Maybelline Barely Beige Color Tattoo as base, Inglot 352 all over, 415 above the crease, 428 in the crease and outer corner, 391 along lash line. I like this because it's colorful without being over-the-top, and I love how the duochrome in 415 makes it look like I'm wearing green in it, too!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Fragrance Friday (A Mini Episode)

It's week 2 of classes (week 1 of teaching), and I've already got more to do than there is time in the day, so this is the quick-and-dirty version of Fragrance Friday, just covering the new fragrances I happen to remember in some detail.

Parfums de Nicolaï New York (Woody Spicy: bergamot, cloves, lavender, lemon, green notes, thyme, cinnamon, pepper, paprika, patchouli, cedar, amber, vanilla, leather): Reminds me of Guerlain Derby and Habit Rouge, both of which I love. Clearly I have a thing for men's perfumes. Crazy longevity! Don't like the citrus top notes (too screechy), but they disappear after a few minutes leaving behind the lovely leather-musk-amber-moss base.
Hanae Mori Butterfly (Oriental: blackcurrant, strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, jasmine, ylang-ylang, rose, peony, sandalwood, cedar, rosewood, almond): mostly vanilla, a bit of berry. reminds me a lot of Pacifica Island Vanilla, which I like better because it's just straight-up vanilla, none of that berry crap. Still, very inoffensive, even for someone like me who tends to hate berry gourmands.
L'Artisan La Chasse aux Papillons (Floral: tuberose, orange blossom, lime blossom, white flowers, jasmine): Tuberose-lite. A pollen-y, soft rendition of tuberose, which balances the voluptuousness and character of tuberose with a more traditional floral feel, making it a nice starter tuberose (and also a floral I can wear, as I find most traditional florals unbearably...floral). Disappointing longevity, but the scent while it lasts is lovely.
Arquiste Anima Dulcis (Oriental Vanilla: cinnamon, cocoa, vanilla, chili): Smoky gourmand incense (I don't care what the notes list says, this has incense!) to start with, becomes softer and sweeter but still complex over time. Really, really lovely. Arquiste keeps knocking me off my feet!
Chanel Coromandel (Oriental Woody: benzoin, woods, incense, patchouli, vanilla, musk, orange, neroli, olibanum, orris, citrus, rose, jasmine): Really complex to start (though I was rather frazzled this morning when I put it on, so I can't recall any details––will update with more details once I wear it again), then becomes a nice cozy amber, somewhat friendlier than Ambre Sultan but not different enough to own both, barring the opening.
Haus of Gloi Picaroon: The lovely Larie sent me a wonderful little package (including a pink blush!!!) and included several indie perfume samples––she knows me too well :) I dabbed this on last night before bed, and dozed off happily sniffing my arm. Picaroon smells like lemongrass and coconut and lime, very tropical and delicious (Liz, this is another case of "perfumes that smell like things I want to eat", and seriously, it's delightful). It lasted ~8 hours on me, impressive for an oil-based perfume, and smelled woodsier and less citrusy when I woke up this morning (at 6:15, because my life on Fridays sucks). A definite success!

What have you been wearing this week?

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Revlon Lip Butter in Tutti Frutti Review and Swatches

Another Lip Butter! This one I got because I felt I should have an orange lippie, even though I tend to look atrocious in orange, and even though the whole tangerine craze is rather done now. I'm rather behind the times––though I will say I was wearing leggings as pants when I was only 6 years old. (That doesn't mean I approve of the practice nowadays.)
One swipe Tutti Frutti

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Tip Tuesday: Face Cleansing

Hey, look, Tip Tuesday's back! For at least today––don't count on it becoming a frequent feature. But this is just such a perfect Tip Tuesday topic that I couldn't resist!
image via Philosophy

I use oil cleanser at night to remove my makeup, then double cleanse with Philosophy Purity. Purity claims to be a makeup remover as well as cleanser, but I like to be extra sure that I'm getting rid of everything. However, when I went back east, I didn't have an oil cleanser, so I had to make do with just Purity. I'd read somewhere (don't remember where, my apologies!) that you should always massage cleanser onto dry skin before getting your hands wet and washing it off, much as you do with oil cleansing. Turns out, it works like a charm! I found I had to use about twice as much cleanser as usual to cover my face sufficiently before getting it wet, and I always double cleansed it with another dollop of Purity after rinsing the first batch off, but the end result was completely makeup-free skin. I don't know if that would work for all cleansers, as I've only tried it with Purity, but it's certainly worth giving a shot. It's cheaper to do oil cleansing followed by normal cleanser than to do this method ($7.50/month vs. $10/month), but if you use a cheaper cleanser than Purity that may not be the case, and it's certainly a good tip to have in your back pocket should you ever find yourself without your normal makeup removing products!

Do you apply cleanser to dry skin? How has it worked for you?

Monday, October 1, 2012

October: A Month for Lips and Nails

I've given myself a couple of goals for this month. I feel like my stash has gotten to the size that I don't use everything regularly, and I want to rectify that, so my plan is thus:

I will wear every one of my lippies at least one day this month. I don't have more than 31 (in fact, it appears I have 16, so I could do everything nearly twice!), so this should be doable! I'll try and take FOTDs with them, and hope that it will force me to branch out of my usual product routines––I'll often do blush and eyeshadow before thinking about my lips, and be unable to wear, say, a warm-toned lippie because I've already done cool-toned everything else. We'll see how it goes!

I will also go through and swatch/wear all the polishes I haven't yet posted about on the blog, shown in the picture above. This doesn't include polishes I bought just for polish jewelry (crackles), but everything else will be worn! And if I hate how it looks, or don't like the formula, or can't imagine myself actually opting to wear it, well, into the give-away drawer it goes. So you can expect to see a lot more polish posts this month! I doubt I'll be able to make it through all my unworn polishes, but I tend to change my polish every other day, so I should be able to get through a dozen, maybe more if there's any that I end up hating and remove right away.

What are your beauty goals for October?

Lipstick Queen Big Bang Illusion Lip Gloss in Cosmos Review and Swatches

Every time I visit New York, I try to buy something pretty that I can't easily find elsewhere. This trip, that ended up being Lipstick Queen's Big Bang Illusion lip gloss in Cosmos. The irony of me, lip gloss hater extraordinaire, buying a lipgloss from the lipstick queen, is not lost on me, but guys, this is a lip gloss unlike any others I've tried.
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