Monday, October 28, 2013

Manicure Monday

I've been having some digestive issues lately, which hasn't left me feeling particularly bloggy, but I have procured some new polishes––nothing quite like colorful sparkle fingertips to take away from stomach malaise, no? (Also, due to the discomfort and concomitant resurgence of CFS symptoms, I've been rather absent from the blogosphere, too, which I must apologize for! It's gotten to the point where I'm so far behind on commenting that the thought of trying to catch up gives me anxiety, so while I have been reading and loving y'all's posts, I may not ever write the comments to prove it. I'm sorry! Feel free to not comment on my posts for a few weeks...)

Nubar Iris Dust
This is actually about a year old, but I don't think I've ever shown it here. It's a super dramatic multichrome, shifting from a deep purple to a bright yellow. I wasn't able to capture all the shades, but the shots below capture how it looks most of the time.

It's a perfect fall polish, since it matches the glorious trees. It's very, very sheer, though, so I recommend layering it; I did two coats of Iris Dust over two coats of Wet N Wild Under Your Spell. I neglected to photograph it until a couple of days after applying, hence the tip wear, but I find the wear to be pretty typical. You can find it on eBay for ~$5, which is where I bought mine.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

MAC Lipsticks, Part 1

I heard about The Body Needs from Life's Entropy; it's a website that has handmade cosmetics, as well as samples of pretty much every MAC lipstick and pigment, glitter, and paint pot. After trying Plumful and falling in love, I added TBN to my email list to wait for a sale, and within a few months, there was 30% off everything, so I pounced and picked up 9 that looked promising, in a variety of formulas. I've been playing around with them the past few weeks (my other lippies are feeling somewhat unloved, ha!) and will share my thoughts, split up over a couple of posts. Today, I'll show you the bright warms; next time, I'll show you the pinks and reds, and the final post will cover purchase information.

Left to right, one swipe each: Crosswires, Ultra Darling, Catrice Pinkadilly
Circus, Speak Louder, Impassioned 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited in PK 375 Quick Review and Swatches

This is the other Shu Uemura Rouge Perfect I picked up back when they were half price and I had a coupon. I already reviewed BG 935, which I liked in spite of the short wear time, because the color is so easy to wear and flattering. I had hoped that PK 375 would be a good fuchsia (apparently forgetting that I already have a fuchsia, and picked up another when I was abroad, but that's another issue entirely).
Left to right: MAC Hot Tahiti, MAC Candy Apple, Lipstick Queen Cosmos,
Lipstick Queen Thriller, Shu Uemura PK 375

Thursday, October 17, 2013

ARTDECO Perfect Color Lipstick 82 Review and Swatches

We've been enjoying a resurgence of sunshine and relative warmth, very welcome after record-breaking rain at the end of September. Of course, school has started, and though I am not taking much in the way of classes, I am still teaching (in a tragically windowless room!), and between that and research (in a tragically windowless lab!), I've not had much time for blogging. My apologies! Here is a long-overdue review of a lipstick I purchased in Berlin.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Fragrance Friday

This is brief, because even though I have a ton of perfume samples to try, I keep forgetting to actually apply them. The only one I've managed to wear was Lanvin Me (mandarin, blueberry, rose, tuberose, licorice, sandalwood), which initially made me recoil with its super-sweet berry-full fruitiness, but settled down into an uninspiring pallid synthetic floral and was gone within a few hours. It was a rather unpleasant experience, overall, but it might be a good perfume for a young teenager. Really, though, you could buy something close enough at Bath and Body Works for a quarter the price.

via Neiman Marcus
Before I flew out to Turkey, I stopped off for a few days in New York and visited friends. L and I made our way to the Atelier Cologne boutique downtown, where we tried the new perfumes (Gold Leather and Silver Iris, neither of which was quite my cup of tea), received some free samples, and I picked up a bar of Orange Sanguine soap.
That bar lived in the bottom of my suitcase for the next month, and I finally opened it when I got back home, slightly worse for the wear. It's really, really nice––it smells exactly like the perfume (discussed here), lightly perfumes my whole bathroom, and, as L imagined, is an excellently invigorating morning-shower olfactory experience. It's extremely smooth and silky and cleans without drying (in fact, I find it lightly moisturizing, though if you have perpetually dry skin, it probably wouldn't be enough). The scent, while noticeable, is not overwhelming, and it does not linger or interfere with subsequent perfumes. It's $18 for a 200 g bar and it looks like it will last me about 2.5 months, which isn't terrible, but is still more than I'd like to spend on shower soap regularly, no matter how beautifully scented. Still, I'm glad I bought it, and have thoroughly enjoyed using it! I'll just have to keep my eyes out for a cheaper version, though I don't have much hope: Orange Sanguine is a uniquely cheerful citrus, in my experience, and I may very well eat my words and buy it again when my mood next falls into a funk.

What do you look for in a body cleanser? Have you ever paid $18 for a bar of soap? (In my defense, I also got 4 very generous sample spray vials...) Have you tried Lanvin Me, and if so, what did you think?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

theBalm Nude 'Tude

I picked this up from Birchbox several months ago when I had a coupon. I'd heard good things about it, and I was wanting a replacement for my Too Faced Natural Eye, which has deteriorated in the pigmentation department over the years.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Fragrance Friday

I haven't been smelling any new perfumes this week (but I re-found a stash of unsniffeds, so there'll be a fo realz FF next week), but this is Fragrance Friday, which includes more than just perfume, so today I'm going to talk about homemade bath oil!

I have a rather sizable collection of pure oils, purchased originally to help with my skin woes. I'm very, very slow about adding them into my skincare regimen, though, since my skin has a tendency to break out horribly, but I feel so bad about all those bottles sitting sad and unused in my fridge. My solution: put them to another use!

I remember reading on Bois de Jasmin many months ago about how you could add perfume to unscented lotion or oil to make your own perfumed body products on the cheap, so I decided to give it a try with a perfume that has caused me such heartache: Mitsouko. Absolutely loved the original sample I tried, but the full bottle is evidently from a different reformulation, and it pulls powdery on me. I do not like powder in perfumes, for the most part, but I so, so loved my sample vial that I'm not willing to give up on it, even though there's no reason to suspect it will get better with age. However, I figured it could make for a very decadent bath experience, so I decided to try it in bath oil form.

I used macadamia nut, jojoba, borage, and evening primrose oils, combining in a 1/2 oz vial, then added about 10 sprays of Mitsouko. I belatedly realized I should include an emulsifier so that the bath oil wouldn't coat my bathtub, but the vial was almost full so it ended up being less than 10% polysorbate 80 (my emulsifier of choice), so it wasn't quite as cooperative with the water as it could have been (15-20% is my usual choice for oil:emulsifier ratio). The bath experience itself was still extremely enjoyable, but I'll have to be careful when I shower tomorrow, ha!

My bath smelled quite strongly of Mitsouko, and while it was still not right, I found it much more pleasant in a different format than when applied directly to my skin. The oils made the water super soft, and post-bath, I had no need for lotion or perfume, as my skin was left moisturized and gently perfumed. Still a bit powdery, but it was okay––it just made me feel like I was clean and pampered.

I imagine any perfume could be bath oilified, and I hope to experiment with some of my other full bottles in the future (and maybe make use of some unloved sample vials, as one bath's worth would empty them!). Any oils you have on hand would undoubtedly work as well; you don't have to include an emulsifier, but it makes cleanup much easier. I purchased my supplies over a period of several months/orders from Lotioncrafter and Garden of Wisdom and recommend both sites, and there are tons of other places to purchase online.

Have you ever made your own bath oil? What's your favorite way to spoil yourself?

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Manhattan Colour Splash Liquid Lip Tint 94R Red Tulip

I love the concept of lip stains, because I am very lazy, and the idea of one-time application and all-day wear is very appealing. Unfortunately, most lip stains work horribly for me, drying out my lips, wearing away unevenly, settling into lip lines, and just generally looking and feeling awful. But still, I hold out hope.

When I was in Berlin for a conference this summer (any other CogSci folks here?), I visited dm drogerie markt, a common German drugstore, several times, and swatched a bunch of products that looked promising (because unlike here, drugstores have testers in Europe––what a concept!). One was the Manhattan Colour Splash Liquid Lip Tint in 94R Red Tulip, which initially swatched extremely orange and I thus disregarded it, until it came time to wipe my hand free of swatches, when the prettiest coral-red stain was revealed. This stain lasted 24+ hours on my hand, and my interest was further piqued. On our last day, the boy and I visited a dm before heading to the airport, and I picked up a number of things that I'd seen earlier and still wanted, including this stain, because I figured I would regret it if I didn't. Plus, it was, like, €3,95, so I didn't really have much to lose...
So orangey!
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