Tuesday, March 24, 2015

New Anna Sui Lipsticks & BB Cream for Spring 2015

I snapped a few shots of these goodies while down in Florida to share. So pretty!

Anna Sui Spring 2015

You guys know I absolutely adore Anna Sui. Everything she does is feminine, whimsical and downright gorgeous in my opinion!

This spring is no exception as she recently launched her new Lipstick G shooting star lippies and BB Cream. I first caught wind of these right before I left in late February and they kindly sent a few items for me to try out, but as I was traveling when they launched, I had shared a bit about them on instagram. Then of course I came home with the flu, which I'm still recovering from, but I wanted to make sure I highlighted these for you guys because they are too fabulous to miss out on!

Sorry guys, I've been so incredibly sick so I'm in no position to post face swatches, but I'll be sure to share on Instagram once I'm doing a bit better so you can see these in action ;) 

Anna Sui BB Cream

Anna Sui's new BB Cream is part of her Beach collection and will launch in April of 2015. It is meant to offer the benefits of a primer, foundation, UV protection and skincare all in one. It is meant to have a smooth, semi-matte finish once set.

It will come in 2 shades--01/light beige and 02/medium beige.

Anna Sui BB Cream 02 Medium Beige Review

Shade - moderately deep medium beige (leaning slightly on the warm side)
Finish - semi-matte
Flavor/Scent - MAC's traditional vanilla
On the Face - velvety; smooth; not super lightweight, but not heavy
Price - $28 retail 
Where to Buy - b-glowing.com in April of 2015
My Thoughts - This is probably one of the thicker BB Creams I've tried, but it was not super heavy on the face. Not as lightweight as thin, watery formulas, but not mask-like either! As far as evening out my complexion (which is largely what BB Creams are meant to do) this did the trick. I always find the difference between a good BB Cream and foundation is that a BB Cream will even out your natural complexion while a foundation will partially cover it (hopefully to match!). I liked that it offered UV protection, which is delivered through a powder ingredient according to the brand, but as a specific level of protection was not listed I can't share that info with you. Regardless, I have always been taught by veteran pro MUA's and always recommend myself that you use a sun protecting product separate and for the sole purpose of UV protection in addition to the rest of your skin care and makeup routine.

As per how this shade worked on my complexion, it was a bit war for me (I'm more neutral to slightly cool), but I was able to make it work. It was about the same depth as my own complexion (I fall between NC 25-30 most of the year). 

As you know, I have dry skin (especially in later winter/early spring). I didn't find this drying, but as with any matte or semi-matte finish face product I made sure to really prep my skin well with a good, thick moisturizer. This wasn't so matte that I found it flaking or cracking on my dry skin as the day went on. I was also in 86 degree humid weather when I wore it and felt it wore pretty well!

All in all, a nice product if you fit within the complexion range offered!

Powder Pink Lipstick
You can see our view from our
balcony in the background!

Anna Sui Shooting Star Lipstick G

Anna Sui does some of the cutest molded lipsticks ever! Remember the Minnie Mouse ones? These shooting stars were first launched in fall of 2014 I believe I read, but I hadn't seen them before this collection and fell completely in love! The spring Lipstick G lippies come in 7 different shades of which I have 2. They are all beautiful and meant to have a holographic effect similar to Inglot's holographic glosses. They're very multi-dimensional, which is fun!

Anna Sui Lipstick G 350 Powder Pink Review

Shade - holographic light pink
Finish - metallic, multi-chromatic
Flavor/Scent - floral
On the Lips - smooth, metallic finish; not super pigmented, but does add a nice reflective, multi-dimensional pink lash
Price - $30 retail 
My Thoughts - This was a super fun lipstick. If you want something different without a lot of color then Powder Pink is for you! The overall finish was more metallic-flash and less fine-glitter than 850 (which I'll discuss below), but super fun all the same! This could be warn on its own for a more subtle effect or over an existing lipstick or lip liner to add additional dimension. Really in love with these, I need to get my hands on the rest of the shades!

Anna Sui Lipstick G 850 Glitter Gold Review

Shade - glittery metallic gold
Finish - sparkly metallic
Flavor/Scent - floral
On the Lips - smooth feel with glittery golden effect
Price - $30 retail 
My Thoughts - Way back when I was in junior high I secretly purchased and hit a light metallic gold lipstick, wearing it when I left the house and quickly scrubbing it off before I got home. I wasn't allowed to wear makeup out of the house (my parents were pretty strict) until I was in high school. I loved that lipstick and I'm so excited to see so many gold lipsticks come back in vogue once again! I suppose the 90s were good for something aside from good Hip Hop and neons ;) 

This lipstick has a more glittery effect (as the name suggests) than Powder Pink, but the formula is super smooth and not at all gritty. Overall, I think the effect is beautiful both on its own and over another lipstick or liner. I think gold lipstick looks particularly beautiful over nude and natural lip colors alongside bronzed/tan looks. Love, love this lipstick!

Final Thoughts

Overall, loving these new products from Anna Sui! I'd have to say, the lipsticks probably thrilled me the most, partially because of that too-cute shooting star shape and partially because the effects were unique and fun. The BB Cream is nice, especially for easy-breezy makeup days. I'm sure the fact that it has a semi-matte finish will be a huge plus for all the combo and oily girls out there!

Definitely check these goodies out!

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

MAC Bao Bao Wan Restock!

MAC Forbidden Sunrise is Back!

It seems MAC is doing little surprise restocks here and there from different collections. The other day, Romantic Breakdown from Bao Bao Wan restocked and now it looks like Forbidden Sunrise has!

Hurry if you want to grab it since the last restock sold out SUPER fast!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Rejoining the Land of the Living! Pixiwoo Real Techniques, MAC Julia Petit and more...

I have been so sick since my return from my recent trip as many of you already know. I have asthma and managed to get the flu on the way back, which resulted in a really bad chest infection among other things. I'm happy to report that I'm about 75% better and have some exciting new product and things to share with you later this month!

Unfortunately, Kotex samples are officially no longer available, but keep your eyes peeled for more upcoming offers and deals.

I saw that MAC Julia Petit launched this morning online, but it looks like it sold out almost instantly! I have Petite Red and will be sharing it on Instagram and maybe on here as well!

I also recently received one of the Bold Metals Real Techniques brushes designed by the Pixiwoo sisters. I've never been a huge Real Techniques user, but this brush looks pretty good for personal use! It's fairly large (larger than most pointed crease or pencil brushes I own) and the head is synthetic and soft/dense. If you have small eyes like me, you may find it a little more difficult to use, but for average size eyes I think it could work well.

bold metals real techniques crease brush pixiwoo

I think that covers it for now. Check back soon for new products, updates and spring posts soon!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Top Spring Break Travel Makeup Bag Products & Tips


top spring break travel makeup bag products & tips mac cinderella, make up for ever, amazing cosmetics, urban decay

Top Spring Break Travel Makeup Products

I know it's not technically spring for a couple weeks, but Spring Break is fast approaching and I'm actually traveling soon, so I thought it would be fun to do an early spring beauty travel post featuring some of my must-haves! 

When I travel, I try to be really efficient when it comes to the products I bring. I don't want to bring too much because a. things can get lost or damaged and b. it's just more to carry and pack! One of the things I find a lot of beauty lovers struggle with is how to pack their beauty and skincare as well as what to bring. Here are some of my personal beauty travel tips...

Beauty Travel Tips: 
  • Pack products that are versatile! For example, products that can serve multiple purposes such as a cheek/lip tint or a moisturizer you like to use as a primer as well. 
  • Keep in mind the temperature/environment you're traveling to. While it's below freezing and buried in snow where I live, I'm traveling to significantly warmer, more humid weather. I want to make sure I bring beauty and skincare (not included in this post) that suit those temps!
  • Keep your makeup bag in your carry-on. I find that putting my makeup in my check-in is hit or miss when it comes to damage. Sometimes everything makes it through fine, other times you can tell they probably punted my bag onto the conveyor belt. Remember to review TSA regulations for liquids.
  • If you're worried about the TSA 3-1-1 rule when it comes to your skincare, put your skincare in ziplocs and carefully pack it in your check-in bag. 
  • Depot larger tubs of creams and bottles of liquids into smaller, travel-friendly, leak-proof containers. I've seen a lot of stores in the last few years sell bigger varieties of empty jars and bottles--from Target to beauty supply stores. I always try to transfer only as much product as I'll need (plus an extra couple days just in case) to travel-containers to conserve space and prevent waste in case anything breaks/spills. 
  • Do not put things such as eyebrow razors, cosmetic scissors, nail clippers, etc. in your makeup bag if you're putting it in your carry-on. You will likely get pulled to the side by security and end up having to either ship it back to yourself (which is a pain and can be costly) or give it up entirely. Either way, it can be a delay and hassle. I remember my bestie accidentally leaving a small pair of scissors in her bag when we were traveling to a wedding. Thinking ahead, she threw them in her bag so we'd be able to cut any tags or stray threads. Of course we were pulled to the side and she immediately realized she should have thought that one through! Lesson learned.
I hope those help!

Peak Inside My Spring Break Travel Makeup Bag - Part 1

Here is the first half of the makeup products I'm bringing with me on my upcoming trip--minus a few mystery products I'll be testing out while I'm gone, which I'll probably share snap shots of on Instagram once I'm there! I am packing my skin care in my carry-on and have not included my skincare bag in this post, though I'm happy to do a feature in the future if people request it.

Also, I didn't include it here, but I often bring my Sugarpill palettes with me when I travel as I find they travel well and give me the bright mattes I want! I'm a big, big fan of their chromalusts as well, but I'm still testing out different travel-friendly containers for them.

top spring break travel makeup bag products & tips mac cinderella, make up for ever, amazing cosmetics, urban decay

1. Eyeko Sport Waterproof Mascara - This mascara has been a favorite for some time and since it not only lengthens (I don't plan to wear falsies much of the trip), but is very waterproof, it's perfect for the weather I'm headed for. Available at Sephora.com. Retail: $24

2. MAC x Cinderella Coupe D'Chic Iridescent Pressed Powder - From MAC's recently launched Cinderella collection, this pressed powder is super sparkly and magical--exactly what I need on my trip! Sold out at MACCosmetics.com as of right now, but should launch in-store around the 5th. Retail: $28

3. Aquareveal Smooth Talker Water Peel for Lips - This is a recently launched product meant to help you exfoliate your lips without the grit! I tend to find airports/airplanes super dry, so I'm going to be giving this a whirl after I fly out. Available at Aquareveal.com. Retail: $24

4. MAC x Cinderella Happily Ever After Lipglass - Also launched in MAC's Cinderella collection, this beautiful, light pink gloss with reflective blue-lilac specks is just stunning both alone as well as layered! I'll definitely be using this a lot as I love to wear gloss when traveling as I find it a bit more worry-free than lipstick. Sold out at MACCosmetics.com as of right now, but should launch in-store around the 5th. Retail: $16.50

5. MAC x Toledo Petrol Blue Liner - This was a repromote in the recently Toledo launch, but it's a shade I've had in my kit and collection for some time. It is beautiful. I usually like to smudge it under the lower lashline or apply it to the lower lashline for a little extra sparkle. Available at MACCosmetics.com. Retail: $17.50 (Toledo), $16 (permanent)

6. Make Up For Ever Artist Liner in M-10 - I am a huge fan of MUFE liners, but when they released these Artist liners a while back I was a tad skeptical as I'm usually a waterproof liner-only user. Honestly, this liner instantly won my over. It's creamy, pigmented and conveniently does not need a sharpener, which is perfect for travel! Honestly, amazing, amazing liner and I use it in addition to all of my beloved MUFE waterproof liners. Available at Sephora.com. Retail: $19

7. Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Liner in Zero - I know people are in love with UD's ultra-black liners, but I honestly still love Zero. I find it softer and less harsh and since I'm a black liner wearer on a daily basis weather I'm wearing a smoky eye or neutral eye, I find it's more versatile. Available at UrbanDecay.com. Retail: $20

8.  MAC x Toledo Modern Twist Lash in Caligrafy - I have literally been wearing colored mascaras for at least ... 18 years. Wow, that makes me feel old! I love them. When I want bold lash color I'll usually use a white primer (since my lashes are black), but if I want a more subtle hint of color I'll simply put the colored mascara over my favorite black mascara so it tints them. You need some colored mascaras in your life! Available at MACCosmetics.com. Retail: $24

9. Becca Beach Tint in Dragonfruit - Not only is this little beauty waterproof, but it can be used on both cheeks and lips. I love this shade. It's one of my all-time favorite cheek tints and it smells amazing. It also lasts all day long in my experience. Definitely a great warm-weather, travel-friendly product! Available at Beccacosmetics.com. Retail: $25

Peak Inside My Spring Break Travel Makeup Bag - Part 2

I thought it would be easier to break down the products into two pics so you could see them a bit easier, so here are the remaining products in my Spring Break travel makeup bag!

top spring break travel makeup bag products & tips mac cinderella, make up for ever, amazing cosmetics, urban decay

10. Lipstick Queen Oxymoron Lip/Cheek Cream in Open Secret - Again, another fabulous lip/cheek product! This compact is super convenient not only for throwing in my travel bag, but transferring to my handbag when I go out. The shade is perfect for spring and summer in my opinion. Super fresh and pretty! Available at LipstickQueen.com. Retail: $24

11. AmazingCosmetics A Little AmazingConcealer in Medium Beige - AmazingConcealer is a fabulous concealer that sets fairly quickly, blends beautifully, covers well and wears with little to no creasing even under eyes. I'm super impressed by my experience with this concealer thus far and I look forward to testing it further while I'm away. This had been recommended to be my several makeup artists over the last year. Available at AmazingCosmetics.com. Retail: $28

12. Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentrate - I use quite a few Embryolisse skincare products, both in my kit and for personal use, including this when I want a lighter daily moisturizer. Since I'm heading to much more skin-favorite weather I'm looking forward to using a more humid, warm-weather appropriate moisturizer! This also doubles as a great primer. Available at EmvryolisseUSA.com. Retail: $16 (1 oz), $28 (2.6 oz)

13. MAC Rick Baker Spider Queen Eyeshadow Palette x 6 - I purchased this back when it launched in 2013 and it's still a favorite. The shadows offer amazing performance and the colors are perfect for creating either a soft, smoky eye or a green spring look. No longer available at MACcosmetics.com as a palette, but half of the colors are available individually

14. MAC x Cinderella Stroke of Midnight Eyeshadow Palette x 6 - While most of the colors in this palette are permanent colors, the palette itself is so nicely put together (in my opinion) that I knew I had to have it the second I saw promotional images. If you want to create a contoured eye or soft neutral eye, this is your palette! It is sold out on MACCosmetics.com as of this moment, but it should launch around March 5th in-store. Retail: $44

As I mentioned above, I have a few products I wasn't able to show here yet that I plan to share while I'm away that I look forward to using as well! So excited to leave this frozen New England tundra and head to sunny, warmer weather. 

In addition to my travel makeup bag I'll also have a separate bag for skincare and a separate makeup brush container. I'm happy to share those as well in future posts in people are interested.

Are any of you traveling soon? What's in your Spring Break travel makeup bag?

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

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Top #SpringBreak Travel Essentials - U by Kotex Saves the Day Yet again #SavetheUndies


Don't forget to click to claim your free samples of one of my favorite travel essentials after you're done reading!

u by kotex cleanwater pads with 3d capture core travel essentials free samples

Why I'm Officially a Jet-Setting #UnderWarrior

Valentine's Day may have come and gone, but February is all about love and I love U by Kotex's 3D Capture Core technology! Because of some issues I've had for a long time with my hormones, I get my period irregularly--usually more frequently. Sometimes it'll be a few days early, sometimes it'll come a week or more before it should! I have had to track it carefully for well over a decade, but it has a mind of its own and despite my best efforts I just have to stay prepared.

It's a bird ... it's a plane ... no wait, it just has wings, but it'll save the day anyway! It's U by Kotex Cleanwater Pads!

This time last year, one particular incident comes to mind in which U by Kotex saved the day ... and my pants! We were traveling (which we tend to do somewhat frequently) and go figure, I got my period on the plane. Talk about misery! Thank goodness U by Kotex Cleanwater Pads are always on my travel bag packing list and I was able to prevent a super embarrassing, super uncomfortable situation just in the nick of time.

You know how it is when you have your period and you have to sit for a long period. You want to make sure when you get up there are no surprises beneath you! Thanks to U by Kotex's 3D Capture Core, my pants and my seat were saved. U by Kotex® Ultra Thin Pads have 3D Capture Core which i a one-of-a-kind center that locks away wetness to help stop leaks. If you look closely, you can actually see the leak-preventing core!

u by kotex cleanwater pads with 3d capture core travel essentials free samples

And if you're the type that gets embarrassed when you have to pull a giant mattress-sized pad out of your bag in ugly, obviously packaging U by Kotex has got you covered! U by Kotex Cleanwater Pads are ultra thin and super cute. Is that weird to say? Well, the packaging is cute! They're also cotton-soft and have flexible wings that hold each pad in place.

u by kotex cleanwater pads with 3d capture core travel essentials free samples

So there you have it! This is why I'm in love this February with U by Kotex Cleanwater Pads with 3D Capture Core. I'm going to be traveling again soon and guess what I've already packed in my travel bag? Yep, you guessed it! U by Kotex!

So what are you waiting for? Join the #UnderWarrior ranks and #SavetheUndies!

Thank you, U by Kotex, for sponsoring this post. 

Friday, February 20, 2015

MAC x Cinderella First Impressions - Images & Initial Review


Don't forget to check out the free sponsored goodies I have for you guys! 

mac cinderella collection review

MAC x Cinderalla First Impressions

As I'm sure you've guessed, I've gotten my first in-person peek at this beautiful collection and I wanted to share it with you guys before it launches next week (the tentative date now is the 26th online).

MAC x Cinderella Packaging First Impression

MAC went to great lengths to create packaging that feels like a perfect fit (to me) for this upcoming Disney film. The packaging is a lovely lilac-leaning cornflower blue with a pink sheen and gold accents. My phone couldn't pic it up nearly as strongly as the eye can in person, but it is there!

If you were slightly bummed with the Maleficent packaging, this will surely impress you! It isn't child-like, but there is something ... Disney-esque about it overall--which I love!

The packaging feels sturdy like MAC's usual packaging and not as lightweight as I found Alluring Aquatic, for example, to be. 

Of the 3 products I received, I think the compact is the most impressive packaging-wise. Look at that pretty gold rim on the inside!

I have to say, even the boxes (yes, I am a shameful box collector) are gorgeous. Super, super pretty!

MAC x Cinderella Product First Impression 

The product at first glance are very pretty and well-suited to the film they were inspired by. I received: 
  • Happily Ever After lip glass
  • Evil Stepmother pigment
  • Coupe D'Chic Iridescent Powder (pressed)

MAC x Cinderella Happily Ever After Lip Glass

It skews a bit more mauve above than it really is. In person, it's a pretty natural pink with gorgeous aqua flecks. Totally going to be wearing this on vacation soon!

MAC x Cinderella Evil Stepmother Pigment

This reminds me of Beauty Marked in the sense it has that smoky charcoal base with purple shimmer. Despite some people not being huge fans of Beauty Marked due to its texture, it's actually been one of my favorites since high school! I do find it takes a little extra love and care, but you can work with it in my opinion! I'll be interested to see if this has a similar texture.

MAC x Cinderella Coupe D'Chic Iridescent Pressed Powder

This pressed powder is gorgeous in the compact! It's a lovely peachy-pink with heavy shimmer. The shimmer does translate to the same intensity on the face, but I feel like this product was inspired by such a magical film, it's perfect if you're going for a more whimsical look!

If you're not a fan of heavy shimmer then you may want to consider the Mystery Princess Powder as I've heard the shimmer is a bit more subtle. I personally have not tried the other powder myself. 

I think it's a cute product overall and one I can see myself having fun with once the weather warms up a bit and I want to go for a wood nymph-esque look!

What do you think? Will you be grabbing anything from the upcoming MAC x Cinderella collection?

Note: Product in this post were provided by PR. All opinions are my own.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Spring is Coming Beauty Giveaway - Open Internationally

Spring is Coming Beauty Giveaway

You know nothing, Jon Snow! Winter is no longer coming--spring is coming!

I know many of you are buried in snow like me, but spring isn't too far away! One of my absolute favorite colors in spring is pink. I thought it would be fun to have a little giveaway with some of my favorite recently released pinks and some cute makeup brushes.

This prize (pictured above) will go to 1 randomly chosen winner and includes:
  • Limited Edition Sugarpill Pastelle Chromalust
  • Limted Edition MAC Please Yourself Bluh
  • Tarte Lipsurgence Lip Gloss in Envy
  • Japonesque Face Brush
  • 2 x Japonese Lip Brushes (yes, there is 1 duplicate)
  • Japonesque Eye Crease Brush
  • Japonesque Foundation Brush
This giveaway will begin February 17 and end March 10th at midnight. The winner will be announced March 11th or 12th and contacted via the email provided. This giveaway is open internationally to those 18 and older. To claim the prize, the winner must respond within 48 hours with his/her mailing address. If the first winner fails to respond in time, a new winner will be randomly chosen and so on and so forth until the prize is claimed.

Head to the rafflecopter widget below to enter! By entering you're agreeing to all of the terms of this giveaway, so make sure to read them first ;) 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!