Friday

MAC Good Luck Trolls Collection has launched!

PR Samples

mac good luck trolls review

MAC Good Luck Trolls 

When I first heard that MAC was launching a Good Luck Trolls collection I have mixed feelings. What would it look like? Would the packaging be cute? Would the products include colors I'd use? I wasn't a huge troll doll collector, but I had a couple that I loved and treated well. One was an mini orange-haired guy that sat on the top of a pencil and the other was a rainbow-haired guy that I thought was the business.

Saturday

MAC X Chris Chang First Look

Press Samples

MAC x Chris Chang Collection Review

MAC x Chris Chang Overview

If you love makeup, if you love color and if you have an appreciation for Eastern culture (like this hapa) then this collection is going to demand you bring it home!

Drops Online: May 5, 2016
Drops in Stores: May 12, 2016
Available: Maccosmetics.com/MAC stores & counters

Chris Chang, a Shanghai based fashion designer, has teamed up with MAC to create what may be the most colorful and beautiful collection I've seen in a while. Inspired by one of the oldest forms of Chinese opera--Kunqu, this collection is absolutely bursting at the seams with loveliness.

When I first saw promo pics for this collection they got me excited, but I have to say that the actual products in person exceeded my expectations. Limited edition packaging often calls to me, but this screamed my name!

As if the packaging wasn't already color-drunk enough, the actual products created for this collection are just as vibrant and beautiful. Bright cream colors, shadows and lipsticks are accented by the appearance of MAC's tried and true blacktrack fluidline and prep + prime transparent finishing powder.

This collection includes:

  • 5 lipsticks (ranging from teal to red)
  • prep + prime transparent finishing powder
  • Blacktrack fluidline
  • 3 cream color bases
  • 4 eyeshadows
I have got to get my hands on DDDevlish (pink) and Vermillion Vee (red) lippies, they have my name all over them!

What do you think? Will you be grabbing anything from this collection? If I had to make predictions regarding the launch I'd guess the lipsticks and large compact will go first, followed by the shadows, cream color bases and then Blacktrack. Lipsticks tend to be some of the most popular items in LE collections and large compacts with special designs also tend to draw a lot of attention, so if these are on your must-have list scoop them up fast!

Happy MAC stalking. ;)


Note: Products in this post were provided by PR/the brand. All opinions are my own.

Tuesday

March 2016 Doki Doki Crate - Spoiler & Review

PRESS SAMPLE


March 2016 Doki Doki Crate Overview

I've mentioned the Doki Doki Create by Japan Crate quite a few times since they've launched and I've been fortune enough to review them the last few months. I was super excited to receive March's as I'd heard they'd done a bit of revamping and this month promised to be ever better than the last! As with any new subscription there's going to be some growing pains along the way and it seems that despite some little bumps the first couple months, Doki Doki is really coming into its own and finding the right brands and distributors to partner with to provide licensed, high-quality kawaii goodies for its boxes.

Cost per month: $30 (shipping included)
Where to subscribe: Doki Doki's website

March's box had a bento theme and being a fan of bento storage I was super excited to see what they put together. Overall, I'd say this box was actually my favorite thus far! While I am a fan of kawaii plush and can't wait to see more over the coming months, it was really nice to get some items that were super useful and not just decorative in this month's box. Don't get me wrong, I love collecting fun things to display, but getting things that I could use on a regular basis was great as well!

I shared a video on instagram the day I received my crate, but if you haven't seen it yet here it is...


I know a lot of you guys already received your @dokidokicrate, but mine just arrived and I'm totally in love! 🍱 Food themed goodies plus more kawaii fun 😍 First of all, this hapa loves bento and the cute little supplies to make your own bento boxes are adorable! I also love Re-ment everything and this month included TWO re-ment blind boxes. The cute little food accessories 🍩 are definitely going on my travel backpack and I can always use more stationary goodies--pens, a mini notebook and stickers this month. Overall, I actually like this month's better than last month believe it or not! Can't wait to see what next month's has in store. 💞 Have you subscribed? Thoughts? #dokidoki #japancrate #kawaii #japanese #japan #hapa #love #blindbox #rement #socute #aforable #bento #subscriptionbox #instagood #instadaily #beautygram #stationary #donut #bao #sushi #onigiri #bblogger #blogger #beautyblogger #bestoftheday #subscription #lifestyle #youneedthis #prsample
A video posted by DoriaMUA (@beautypopstop) on

As you can see, March's box offers plenty of value!

This month's box included:
  • one-time use folded bento boxes
  • bento dividers
  • bento sauce containers (animal theme)
  • bento food decorations (galaxy theme)
  • squishy cat bao hanging charm
  • squishy donut hanging charm
  • kawaii food stickers
  • kawaii doll pens
  • mini notebook
  • 2 Re-ment blind boxes
As I've mentioned before, it can be hard to find Japanese goods in the U.S. and often when you do they're either not legit or they're very expensive. The one Japanese-only store near me that carries a few similar items to those included in this box would cost me a pretty penny to purchase, so I personally found the value of this box to be really great this month!

If you're a fan of kawaii goodies I highly recommend you give Doki Doki's subscription a try. Especially now that they seem to be partnering with some really great brands and distributors, I think the boxes will only continue to get better!

Get your Doki Doki subscription in time for April's box and you could get the adorable plush I've heard rumors about!

What do you think? Is this the type of subscription you would be interested in?


Note: Products in this post were provided by PR/the brand. All opinions are my own based on my personal experience.

Thursday

Spring Beauty & Skin Care Coming Your Way Soon!


Spring is coming. Here's a quick update on me, the blog and more!

Valentine's Day Beauty Gift Guide

Press Samples/Purchased by Me

Valentine's Day Gift Guide 2016 Beauty

Valentine's Day Gift Guide for Beauty Lovers

Flowers are fine and chocolates are delicious, but you may want to skip traditional gifts when looking for the perfect Valentine's Day gifts for the beauty lover in your life! With so many gorgeous products launching as we transition from late winter to early spring, now is the perfect time to grab some gorgeous goodies that the beauty lover in your life is not likely to have already bought for herself/himself.

Here are my top pics for Valentine's Day 2016! All of these items can be purchased online--perfect for last-minute Valentine's Day shopping.

Tuesday

First Look & Impressions: Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani - partial collection

Press Samples



Sorry I'm not home right now I'm walking into spiderwebs, so leave a message and I'll call you back...

Just me reliving my teens over here! While I wasn't a die-hard No Doubt fan, I really loved some of their songs and Gwen Stefani was so funky and original, I definitely took note. For me, the popularity of ska bridged the gap between my peers (who primarily loved rock, punk and pop) and I (I was all about r&b, hip hop and reggae) and suddenly we were all listening to the same songs and loving it! For that reason, No Doubt will always hold a special place in my heart--not to mention the fact it was the background music for some pretty fun teenage memories.

When I first heard that Gwen Stefani and Urban Decay had partnered to create a collab collection my inner 90s teenage self got excited! My second thought was--red lipstick! Remember the cover of No Doubt's Tragic Kingdom album?  Gwen is all about that red pucker and I love it.

I recently received samples of a good portion of the collection to share with and despite the fact some recent events have made swatching a little slower than usual on my end, I've got some first shots for you to lust over in the mean time.

First Impressions

Overall, my first impressions are mostly good! I love the packaging--it's so Gwen. And I absolutely love the lip pencil and lipstick shades. I'm a bit disappointed that the brow kit is definitely geared towards blondes--much like how the shadow palette was geared more towards fairer complexions. I wish they had released 2 more sets in the UD x Gwen packaging; one for medium brow shades and one for deeper shades. I do like some of the shades in the blush palette, but again, it's definitely limited as to what complexions shades could work for. I think deep complected and even some medium complected girls and guys will find some of the shades to be a tad too light. I know Gwen is a dyed blonde, but I wish they'd tried to appeal more towards a global complexion range with the collection. That being said, the collection is pretty and I look forward to creating some gorgeous looks with it!

Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani blush palette review
UD x Gwen Stefani Blush Palette
Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani blush palette review
UD x Gwegn Stefani blush palette

Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani brow box review
UD x Gwen Stefani Brow Box
Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani brow box review
The box includes 2 powders and a wax in the first section.

Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani brow box review
The second section contains 2 mini brushes and a mini set of tweezers.
Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani 24/7 Glide-on Lip Pencils
UD x Gwen Stefani 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencils - Wonderland, Rocksteady, Firebird, Phone Call, 714

Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani 24/7 Glide-on Lip Pencils
UD x Gwen Stefani 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencils bottom to top - Wonderland, Rocksteady, Firebird, Phone Call, 714

UD x Gwen Stefani Lipstick review
UD x Gwen Stefani Lipstick
Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani Lipstick review
Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani lipstick l to r - 714, Firebird, Phone Call, Rock Steady, Spiderweb, Wonderland


Stay tuned! I'll be using these in an upcoming look or two.

What do you think? Did you grab anything from this collab?


Note: Products in this post were provided by PR/the brand. All opinions are my own based on my personal experience.

Sunday

Swatches and Review: MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour Tailored to Tease, Oh Lady, Back in Vogue

Press Sample

MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour Swatches & Review Tailored to Tease, Oh Lady, Back in Vogue
L to R: Tailored to Tease (also on lips); Oh, Lady; Back in Vogue

MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour

MAC has put the Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolours on their site as "coming soon" and the beauty world is buzzing! I did some "fast & dirty" swatches for you guys on Instagram and thought it might be helpful to discuss my thoughts on the formula, since people are dying to know how they compare to other formulas.

The lip swatch above wasn't edited in any way. When I say "fast and dirty" I mean that I swiped it on, snapped a shot with my phone, then posted it without any editing of any kind. I didn't even do any sort of clean up before snapping the shot and I did use the applicator instead of a lip brush (which would normally be my preference).  I wanted to give you guys a "raw" look since it's a new formula.


Initial Thoughts

For starters, I personally feel like most liquid lipsticks are totally hit or miss. They either knock your socks off or they make your lips feel like they're ripping themselves off your face. Granted, I'm incredibly particular when it comes to my lips and tend to be a bit more sensitive to even a smidge of dehydration, I do feel like there's an acceptable and unacceptable threshold of slight dryness when it comes to mattes. With the exception of a select few formulas (some OCC lip tars, Lipstick Queen's mattes and a couple MAC mattes), I find almost every matte shade drying to some degree--especially with wear.

Application
These applied very smoothly for me. While it seems that different shades have applied differently based on reviews by bloggers that received a broader variety of shades (often the case with most lipsticks), I found that the 3 shades sent to me were actually really decent to apply. The formula had a light, mousse-like consistency that gave me a reasonable amount of control. Coupled with the pointed end of the teardrop-like shape of the applicator, I think these were some of the easiest liquid lipsticks to control that I've played with to date. I also found that while these did set fairly fast, they didn't dry so quickly that they set before I finished applying. These were also easy for me to layer and didn't pull up previous layers when new layers were applied.


Wear
While these were a bit drying with wear, they were not painfully drying to the point I felt the compulsion to remove them. I do recommend applying to well-prepped lips (exfoliated, moisturized), but overall they weren't evil by any means. I also found that these did not crack on me, even when I went to great lengths to contort my mouth and open it as wide as possible--not sure why you'd do this on a regular day, but I figured I'd give it a shot. The formula seemed to have a really decent amount of flexibility, which was nice. I did notice that after playing around for a bit when I relaxed my mouth it wrinkled more than it had prior, but that's to be expected in my opinion after the lengths I went during my lipstick "stress test".

I had no feathering at all (I typically don't with this type of product), thought I didn't eat anything with any sort of oil in it.

Removal
These removed easily for me with oil (I use Argan oil for just about everything), but I found a regular makeup removing wipe struggled a bit to take everything off.

Packaging
Normally I wouldn't spend too much time discussing a MAC lip product's packaging as they tend to be very consistent, but since these are new and I've seen a LOT of people discuss the packaging, I thought I'd throw my 2 cents out there. I don't mind the packaging. It did take me back for a second when I saw them--the combo of a gloss tube with a traditional MAC lipstick top--but I actually kind of like them. I don't think they're super attractive per say, but I like that it distinguishes them from my MAC glosses. I also think it's a tad clever that they mixed a traditional lipstick tube with a gloss tube for a liquid lipstick. Love it or hate it, the packaging is totally functional, as easy to store and carry around as any gloss or lipstick and certainly not such a big deal that it would make or break my experience with the formula or applicator. 

I'm really curious to get my hands on a few other shades. I have my eye on Personal Statement, To Matte with Love, Feels so Grand, Dance with Me. Overall, impressed with the formula so far and looking forward to seeing how others feel about them!

What shades are you planning to buy once they launch?


Note: Products in this post were provided by PR/the brand. All opinions are my own.