Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Brush Whiten Go with Colgate Optic White

Want a beautiful whiter smile, but don't want to add complicated steps to your routine? Try our New Colgate® Optic White™ Toothbrush + Built-In Whitening Pen, the first toothbrush with a built-in whitening pen.
  • Brush. Brush as you normally would with your toothpaste.
  • Whiten. Turn dial at bottom of pen and apply gel. It takes only seconds to apply and adhere to your teeth. No waiting, no rinsing.
  • Go.™ Store pen inside brush.
It's so quick and easy to use, you will want to use it every day!
Now you can get whitening Results, Convenience, AND Affordability...all from one product. Whiter Teeth in just 2 days*, Satisfaction Guaranteed! 
*For best whitening results, continue to use as directed.

I received Colgate's Optic White toothbrush with whitening pen and a sample of Optic White toothpaste to try out and review from Influenster a few weeks ago. Everyone that knows me knows that I am all about having the whitest teeth possible! This was my first try of the Colgate "Optic White" line of products and so far I am impressed. 
I love that the toothbrush had the whitening pen built in which made it really easy to remember to use every time I brushed my teeth. I also liked the toothpaste, which I'm usually pretty picky about, but it kept my mouth feeling clean all day. I was little worried that my lips would wash off the whitening gel after applying when I closed my mouth but I don't think it did. I could still feel it in my mouth for about 10 minutes post-brushing. The only thing that I didn't love about the whitening gel is that I feel like it made my lips dry after applying, but I just applied chapstick and went on about my life. No biggy. 
Before & After (1 week)

I didn't have any major stains and my teeth were already pretty white but they definitely look a little brighter to me! 


Monday, March 17, 2014

First Look: Shea Moisture Makeup Collection

It's no secret Shea Moisture is one of my favorite brands for hair and body products. They use such great ingredients for a reasonable price range. So when I heard through the twitter-verse they were releasing a line of cosmetics I could not wait. 

The first sighting was at Korto Momola's fashion show during NYC Fashion week by The Style and Beauty Doctor 


At this time the collection has been given no official release date but I can say that several beauty bloggers have started spotting incomplete displays at their Target stores. I was lucky enough to find a display in my area and pick up a few items and play around with them this weekend.

Creme Concealer in Havasu Hazel ($11.99)
I bought this to use a highlight under my eyes but unfortunately it's too light. :-(
Regardless I played around with it on my face and on my mom who's lighter than me and I do like the formula of this concealer. It feels moisturizing without being greasy and provides medium to full coverage. Also a little goes a long way you really only need 2 dots to cover the under-eye area. Definitely going to try the next shade darker for myself because my mom has officially claimed this one. 

Illuminating Powder in Havana Sunrise ($11.99) 
This illuminating powder applied very smooth and evenly. There were about 6 shades of illuminating powder from very light to very dark so I just grabbed one in the middle. The shimmer is very fine and I could definitely see myself using this for an all over glow in the summer. It also comes with a nice brush and mirror underneath the product. The brush reminds me of the Physician Formula and Benefit ones but so much nicer, it's not scratchy and very soft.

Mineral Blush Insert in Varkala Spice ($5.99)
This blush comes at an insert and they are selling the compacts separately which I like. I didn't buy the compact as I prefer to just stick pans like these in a z-palette. Like the illuminator the blush applied smoothly and had good buildable pigmentation with a nice subtle shimmer. I love the coral-orange color. 

Wet/ Dry Eyeshadow Insert ($4.99) in Taylor 
I picked up this eyeshadow pan because purples are notoriously bad in drugstore collections. This deep purple-blue eyeshadow applied sheerly when dry but picked up more pigment when swatched with a damp brush. It definitely needs the help of a primer and a little building if used dry. I don't love it but it's not horrible, I definitely want to try a few of the other shades to see if I have similar issues. 

Overall Shea Moisture is giving us what the games been missing!

I think this collection is going to be a great addition to the current drugstore brands that are out there. The products have beautiful sturdy packaging and great quality. I can't wait to try more from the range. There are also a brush set, lipstick pencils, lip balm pans, liquid foundations, setting powders and CC creams in this collection. The display I found was partially stocked so I couldn't get the foundation in my shade but I will definitely be going back for it. There were at least 20 shades from light to dark brown (shades for WOC *gasp*) which is pretty much unheard of for a drugstore brand.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Break Away: Divergent Multi-Piece Collector's Kit

Divergent Multi-Piece Collector's Kit

What it is: 
A limited-edition multipiece kit inspired by the traits of each Divergent faction from the worldwide bestseller, Divergent, now a major motion picture. 

What it does: 
Divergent—what makes you different makes you dangerous. This enormous multipiece kit allows you to be brave, selfless, intelligent, honest, and kind all at once. Each of the three eye shadow palettes contains four coordinating High Pigment Eye Shadows plus one High Gloss Transforming Eye Shadow to draw immediate attention to the eyes. The High Gloss Transforming Eye Shadows impart a shimmery, diamond-like reflection that is transparent when applied dry and translucent when applied wet. Mix and match the shades to achieve a unique look every time. The kit also includes a cheek palette with two Long-Wear Blushes, Shimmering Bronzer, and Radiant Glow Illuminator. Four High Shine Lip Glosses round out each faction’s look. Use the double-ended eye and cheek brush and the included Get-the-look cards to choose your faction and proclaim your loyalty. 

This Set Contains: 
- 12 x 0.059 oz High Pigment Eye Shadows in Burnt Mahogany, Radiant Initiation, Peaceful Shimmer, Humble Sheen, Dauntless Ink, Abnegation Stone, Erudite Sapphire, Serene Vanilla, Bold Espresso, Intrepid Moss, Golden Honesty, Altruistic Almond 
- 3 x 0.059 oz High Gloss Transforming Eye Shadows in Choose, Diverge, Transform 
- 2 x 0.11 oz. Long-Wear Blush in Obscure Coral, Misty Rose 
- 0.11 oz. Shimmering Bronzer in Intelligent Bronze 
- 0.11 oz. Radiant Glow Illuminator in Gleaming Pearl 
- 4 x 0.13 oz. High-Shine Lip Glosses in Temptation’s Choice, Fear Not, Supreme Ritual, Natural Virtue 
- Double-ended eye and cheek brush 
- 3 x Get-the-Look cards 

(via Sephora)

Double Ended Brush
This brush is surprisingly soft, as brushes that come in kits are usually not very good in my opinion. I might have preferred a flatter eyeshadow brush as opposed to a fluffy one but it gets the job done regardless. 

Cheek Palette
These two blushes both look nice on my skin tone and apply and blend easily with the included brush. Obscure Coral contains some gold shimmer while Misty Rose is matte. Gleaming Pearl can look a little scary and super white in the pan but it's actually a lovely gold highlight reminiscent of NARS Albatross or Sephora's Microsmooth Highlighter. Intelligent Bronze is pretty much the same color as my brown skin but it does have a very faint gold shimmer. 

Dauntless Eye Palette
 Dauntless is the boldest of the three eye palettes and has great colors for creating a smokey look. Diverge is my favorite of the removable "transforming" shadows. It had the most pigment of the three and a unique blackened moss color. 

Erudite Eye Palette
Erudite consists of warm tones neutrals. Peaceful Shimmer is definitely my favorite out of this palette, I think it looks great all over the lid. 

Abnegation Eye Palette
Abnegation consists of more cool toned neutrals all of which are very pigmented. 

High Shine Lip Glosses
Fear not, Natural Virtue, Temptation's Choice, Supreme Ritual
I love the packaging on these little glosses they remind me of the Hourglass lip glosses. There are two shimmers and two creams. All of which are fairly sheer and neutral. They don't do much on my pigmented lips but they look good over lipstick. 

Honestly I ordered this palette on a whim, I hadn't even read the book lol, with pretty low expectations due to the $59.50 price tag. I just knew it was going to be a bunch of pretty packaging with mediocre product. I WAS SO WRONG! The blushes and eyeshadows are very pigmented with a good blend of mattes and shimmers. The "transforming" shadows almost remind me of pressed glitters, and look good dusted over the eyeshadows with the fluffy eye brush included with the kit.

This kit is definitely a great value for what is included. Although it is currently sold out on Sephora.com it should be available in stores very soon. It's limited edition so don't wait too long to find it! This would be great gift for any Divergent fan or makeup lover.

I read the first book in the Divergent Trilogy this weekend, mostly because I bought this kit and I want to see the movie when it comes out on March 21st. I enjoyed it and am actually interested in reading the rest of the series.

Are you a Divergent fan? Which palette is your favorite?

Friday, March 7, 2014

Making Magic: L'oreal Magic Nude Liquid Powder

I rarely ever purchase drugstore foundations but when I heard about the L'oreal Magic Nude Liquid Powder foundation I decided to give them another try. I read many reviews from other bloggers saying that it was reminiscent of Armani's Maestro foundation which I have been lusting over since it came out. L'oreal brand is also Armani's parent company so I was pretty much sold.  With Armani Maestro ringing in at $62 and L'oreal Magic Nude at a mere $12 it wasn't a hard decision!

I purchased shade "332 Soft Sable" which I believe is the darkest shade that is available unfortunately. I must agree that the bloggers were right about this one! The formula feels exactly like the Armani Maestro sample that I tried out & I really love.
It gives me a light-medium coverage very skin-like finish. Most importantly it is so comfortable on the skin, it feels like theres nothing on my face which I love.
The only thing I dislike is the packaging, I love that it's glass but I wish that it had a pump or dropper like Armani Maestro because, as you can see, the bottle gets messy.

Before & After

I've been loving this foundation for a natural everyday look, the only thing I feel that I need to add is a little concealer under my eyes because I like slightly more coverage on my dark circles.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Shimma Shimma: Milani Brilliant Shine Lip Gloss

I was finally able to get my hands on some of the new Milani lip glosses for Spring 2014, available in 14 shades. I picked up two shimmery shades Luminous, a pink with gold shimmer, and Nude Touch, a champagne-y nude.


I swatched these on my arm because it was very hard to capture the subtle differences in the shimmer on my pigmented lips. 

These glosses have a nice formula, not too sticky but still lasts for about 4 hours, and they have no strange taste either. I also have been loving these glosses over my nude lipsticks which I've been obsessing over this season. The shimmer gives my nude lips a lil pop that I am loving lately. 


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Lost Files: NARS x Guy Bourdin Limited Edition "Coeur Battant" Blush

Somehow I totally forgot about sharing this post. -__- 

I ordered this blush from Sephora in my post-christmas gift card spending spree. 

heavy swatch vs blended swatch

"Couer Battant" is a bold medium-dark magenta with blue undertones and a matte finish. This blush is limited edition from the NARS 2013 Holiday: Guy Bourdin collection.  Like all NARS blushes it is highly pigmented and requires just a light touch to get a good amount of pigment on the skin. It's not the most unique shade on the market but (like everyone else in the world) I'm just in love with the texture of NARS blushes.

Unfortunately this blush is no longer available through Sephora.com or NarsCosmetics.com but maybe you can find it on Ebay.


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

#BrownGirlFriendly: My Favorite Contour Products for Brown Skin Beauties

As a brown girl in the "beauty world" it can be difficult, to say the least, to find decent skin products especially contour powders. Honestly I'm far from the darkest brown girl out there but I still have some serious WTF moments when I'm shopping for a contour powder and everything just makes me look a hot ashy mess, FML. 

All of my picks are matte which imo makes them great for contouring. For me, shimmer = bronzer, which is a whole nother post for a whole nother day! 

With that being said I'm happy to share with all of the other beauty loving brown girls out there some of the best contour products that I have found and as an added bonus all but one are under $10! 
Cover Girl Queen Collection Bronzer in "Ebony Bronze", Sleek Contour Kit in "Dark",  Black Radiance Pressed Powder in "Rich Mahogany", Black Radiance Pressed Powder in "Mocha", MAC Blush in "Blunt", Graftobian HD Pro Powder Foundation in "Hidden Magic" 

BR "Mocha", BR "Rich Mahogany", CG "Ebony Bronze", Sleek "Dark", MAC "Blunt", Graftobian "Hidden Magic"

Black Radiance "Mocha" (~$5): A very surprising drugstore find. These powders were surprisingly pigmented and almost creamy in texture. I love "Mocha" for medium and medium dark skin tones or for a more subtle contour on dark skin tones.

Black Radiance "Rich Mahogany" (~$5): Best for medium dark to deep skin tones

CoverGirl "Ebony Bronze" (~$7): This is probably the most subtle of the contour products featured. The texture in the pan is harder than the Black Radiance powders but it still applies to the skin very well with a brush. Best for medium- medium dark skin tones or layered to enhance a cream contour product.

Sleek Contour Kit in "Dark" (~$8.50): Sleek makes some of the best blushes and contour products ever! I hope they are available in US drugstore sometime in the future. Best for medium dark to deep skin tones. (Also available in "Medium" & "Light)

MAC Blush in "Blunt"($21): I debated about including this product because there are better products for a lower price point but regardless It's a good shade for brown girls. I don't love the texture in the pan, it's a bit stiff imo, I much prefer the silkier texture of the Black Radiance and Graftobian powders. It can be applied lightly or built up to a more pigmented finish. Best for medium to medium dark skin tones.

Graftobian HD Pro Powder in "Hidden Magic" (~$10): The darkest contour product I've come across. The neutral undertones of this product create a true shadow effect on the skin. This powder is highly pigmented, I only use the lightest tap on the tip of my brush anything more and I will definitely have "dirty mud face". This powder is great for ladies with a deep brown skin tones. "Hazelnut" & "Mocha" are also neutral toned powders in this line that may suitable for lighter brown skin tones.

Comment below and share your favorite contour powders!

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