Thursday, March 1, 2012

Spring Collection Review - MAC's "Shop Mac Cook Mac Collection"

Shop Mac Cook Mac eyeshadow quads packaging

Hi Everyone :)

First review on this blog and I thought this collection is really suitable because I would say it's one of the best that MAC has come out with in the last couple of years. Unfortunately many things did sell out quite quickly (I'll talk more about the specific products below), but you may very well be able to snag these either with re-stocking on the MAC's website ( or if you have a CCO aka Cosmetics Company Outlet near you. Another thing is that MAC often re-promotes well-received products in future collections. This collection is full of vivid color that will be great not only for spring but into the summer as well. This collection also marks one of the first collection in the past couple of years that has really good eyeshadow quads in my opinion. Although they are a good value, often MAC's quads that come out with collections are sub-par quality. Shop Mac Cook Mac was definitely an exception and I'm excited to have these for the coming seasons (if it ever stops raining/snowing here in Vancouver...)

Eyeshadow Quads:

Shop & Drop
(Colors from right to left/top to bottom: Sugar Snack, Hypnotizing, Power Boosted, Shop & Drop)

Out of the two quads that I purchased, I really thought the "Shop & Drop" quad would be my favorite, but it really wasn't. It is still quite a beautiful quad with a good balance of colors which I can see will easily meld into different combinations of eye looks, including ones that involve all 4 colors. However, it's definitely more of a night-time/going out kind of color palette (making it less useful for us neutral girls on an everyday basis), and the shade in "Sugar Snack" really leaves something to be desired for a highlight or lighter all over lid color.

With the exception of "Hypnotizing", I would say that the other shades in this quad were quite dupable but as I mentioned, it's a good value to have them in one palette like this and they do suggest many different combinations for eye-looks.) "Hypnotizing" is a repromote from a collection back in 2010 I believe, but I missed out on it that first time. It's a very interesting mixture of what I would say is pewter, antique gold, and lavender.

Conclusion: I like this quad, I really do. It's just not super special and I'll probably use it more rarely than other shadows I have. If you don't already have a good collection of purple eyeshadows, this is a good place to start though. For me, "Hypnotizing" makes it worth it.

Call Me Bubbles
(Colors from right to left/top to bottom: Call Me Bubbles, Fresh Daily, Full of Flavor, Brash)

The "Call Me Bubbles" quad is really something. It's special and something that I see really workable for everyday use. That might seem strange since I claim to be more into neutrals, but shades such as the one in this quad are ones that I get really excited for. They are great shades for warming up any look, whether it be smokey or extremely neutral. Shades like "Fresh Daily" and "Full of Flavor" are great blending-out colors that will provide a color pop to an average look.

Unlike "Shop & Drop", I'm really not sure which shade is my favorite in this one. Maybe I favor "Full of Flavor" a little bit because of it's matte finish, which is not a great finish from MAC but it does make it great for blending out other colors. But in general, I instantly know where I will be able to use this quad and can see myself grabbing for it often in the warmer months. A great go-to for any beach/BBQ type parties that you might go to.

Conclusion: Love it! I would recommend this out of the 3 quads that came out in this collection. I also have a post coming up with a look, inspired by this collection's adverts, using this quad (oh, and it's rather editorial-esque.)

Lip Products:

Tendertone Packaging

Hush, Hush Tendertone

Purring Tendertone

I decided I would go ahead and review the two tendertones together because for the most part, tendertones are a lip balm with incredibly sheer color. "Hush, Hush" gives a beautiful peachy-golden sheen and to me, if Rubenesque paint pot were a tendertone, this would be it. Purring is a sheer tangerine but on my pigmented lips, it basically is clear and gives a very slight orange hue. Both paint pots smell amazing! I've heard descriptions of the smell as a "strawberry-kiwi" scent; I don't know about that but I do know it's a fruity scent. I wish MAC would make tendertones permanent, these are definitely products that I would use daily but because they're limited edition, I feel like I have to savour them more.

Conclusion: I love tendertones! I now know what all the hype was about; the smell is great, the texture is great, and I find it to be a pretty effective lip balm. Next time I'm in the states and pass a CCO, I'm for sure going to be looking out for these.

Woo Me

The kissable lipcolours were released in a collection with more shades last year. "Woo Me" was also a part of that collection and appeared to be the most favored by people who purchased from that collection. So when this was re-promoted with Shop Mac Cook Mac, I went ahead and included it in my order. Honestly, I don't understand the hype. It's not incredibly creamy and you really need to work with it upon application so that it applies smoothly and doesn't settle into fine lines too much. The pinky nude color reminds me of Tom Ford's Blush Nude lipstick and I've even worn them together but I prefer the creamy texture of the TF lipstick.

Conclusion: This was probably the only product from this collection (from my purchase) that I wasn't too thrilled about. I like the long and sleek packaging and it is a great color, but the formula itself leaves something to be desired. However, I should mention that I've heard that the texture of these appears to have changed relative to the originally released kissable lipcolours, but I don't know this for sure since I didn't purchase from that collection.

Watch Me Simmer

Finally we come to "Watch Me Simmer" lipstick. This was probably the quickest product to sell out from this collection - my MAC counter only got 3 of them in and I'm just glad I was able to put one on hold at the beginning of the day (of release) in order to be able to pick it up after work. "Watch Me Simmer" is a bright (almost neon) coral with an amplified finish. The pigmentation is amazing as well. But I should mention, you should really be prepared for all the attention to be on your lips when wearing this lip color. Later on I will be posting a look using the "Call Me Bubbles" quad with this lipstick and as you will see, a really dramatic and rather editorial type look is what you will get. On average, I would suggest wearing this with a really nude eye look, if not just plain black liner and nothing else.

Conclusion: This is a really beautiful lipstick and is really good quality. I'm not sure how practical it really is for most because it's not something I would personally consider an everyday color, but maybe I'll change my mind when my tan is back for the spring/summer seasons. I do recommend it although I know that it's basically sold out everywhere at this point.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A Look - "A Fashion Standard: Smokey Eyes & Nude Lips"

Hi Everyone :)

A different kind of post from my usual, this is actually to talk about a pretty classic makeup look of smokey eyes and nude lips. I find that I am able to default to this look if I am in a hurry but 1) I haven't had much sleep in days and I want to cover that up, or 2) I need to look a little bit fancier than usual for an event :)

On the average day, you'll find me with a soft nude eye while playing up my lashes (as that's my own "classic" way to go.) But when it comes to a smokey eye, to me there's nothing like a smudged out, rocker-chic smokey eye. How to do that in a matter of seconds? Chanel Illusion D'Ombre in Mirifique to the rescue! With this shadow, I can achieve a black lid color with the most amazing silver shimmer just by patting it on the lid. You would think I would need to use a lot to achieve a real black color but in fact, I only need a little because of the incredible pigmentation of these shadows by Chanel. Moving onto the crease, I simply blended out the edges of the shadow into the crease and it will fade into a beautiful charcoal gray color. This eye look makes it look like I've used a few products to get the lid, crease, and shimmer, but in fact it only took one single product.

Below is a *slightly* better picture to show the dimension of this eye look, but still done with my iPhone :(

On to the lips, in this look I used Tom Ford's lipstick in Blush Nude, topped with a bit of LipFusion's lipgloss in Bare Flesh to give it some shine. This part is easy, nude lips are sexy but I think when they're too matte, it can be a little off-putting. So add a nude gloss on top and problem solved! Tom Ford's lipsticks are amazing when they go on but with Blush Nude, it's a little bit of a challenging color to use all the time just because of how it emphasizes the flaws in lips. If your lips are dehydrated or a bit chapped, I would definitely stay away from this shade in the range.

I should mention that on average I either use a rather nude blush or no blush at all with this look. Just because of how chic it is, I much rather contour with a bronzer or any matte contouring shade (went a little bit crazy with that in the top photo in this post...but maybe it's high fashion!)

I hope you liked this look :)


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Face of the Day - February 14, 2012 - "A Pretty Valentine's Day"

Hi Everyone :)

A quick Valentine's Day look for you. This year I'm spending Valentine's at home because the bf is studying. But I'm okay with that because I rather we have a special day whenever we plan to then have a Valentine's that only one of us can enjoy. Plus, I'm not a big fan of crowds when going out for dinner :P Despite being at home though, I still wanted to do something soft and pretty for this day.

Another goal that was a part of this was how little when into it and how few products were involved. Guys don't like much makeup, at least not in terms of base. I think it has to do with them wanting us to look just like we do with makeup, but without actually involving makeup. Although my bf doesn't mind my obsession with makeup, I can tell that he believes less is definitely more. So here goes!

- Bobbi Brown Corrector Bisque (under eyes)
- NARS Stick Concealer in Ginger (around the nose)
- MAC Prep + Prime Translucent Loose Powder (to set)

- NARS Madly

- NARS Lhasa (from Spring 2012 collection - swept lightly over the lids)
- Laura Mercier Full Blown Mascara

- Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Chance

Yup! That's it!

Happy Valentine's Everyone! <3

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Face of the Day - February 10, 2012 - "Getting Ready for Spring" (+ My Favorite Lipstick!)

Hi Everybody :)

This is a quick ready-for-spring (because I'm pretty sick of this gloomy weather that's for sure) look featuring some of my favorite spring-time products of all time, including my favorite lipstick! That lipstick of course is MAC's Ever Hip. Unfortunately, it's a limited edition shade and I wish MAC would just learn something and make great limited edition shades like this permanent. This is also the only makeup item I have that I have backups of (because I really hate the idea of not having it.) It originally came out with MAC's Liberty of London collection in spring of 2010 but has since been repromoted in the Fashion Flower collection during the spring of 2011. Hopefully this is one of those items that they will repromote over and over so that everyone can try it out one day :)

On to the look --

- Laura Mercier Creme Smooth Foundation
- MAC Vibrancy Eye Primer (under the eyes)
- Bobbi Brown Correctors in Bisque and Medium to Dark Bisque
- Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel

- MAC Blush Cream in LadyBlush
- MAC Cream Color Base in Hush

- NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base
- MAC Paint Pot in Rubenesque (base)
- MAC All that Glitters (patted on top of the paint pot, with fingers onto the center of the lid)
- Urban Decay 24/7 liner in Perversion (tightline)
- MAC Kohl liner in I Get No Kick (LE)
- Laura Mercier Full Blow Mascara

- MAC Tendertone in Purring (LE - came out with this season's MAC Shop MAC Cook Collection)
- MAC Ever Hip lipstick
- Revlon Superlustrous Lipgloss in Coral Reef

Quick tip :) : A shimmery champagne liner on the lower waterline can really brighten up the eyes without resorting to a stark white/nude colored liner. Because those colors are solid and bright, they have a different effect than champagne colors that catch the light at certain angles.


Thursday, February 9, 2012

Face of the Day - February 8, 2012 - Taupe Series: "Lazy TAUPE"

Hi Everyone :)

I'm going to start a taupe series. Why? Because that's all people seem to be talking about these days and honestly, I don't blame them. Not only is it an easy hue to wear but it also seems to go with absolutely everything, whether I'm wearing my extremely casual (almost home-like) outfit to my office, or dressed up for a night out with the bf. And the beauty of this look is...there's almost nothing to it. This was one of those 5 minute things that I did being in a hurry for work :) (currently trying to catch up on posts)

As always sorry about the picture, one its the end of the day and I just look worn out and two, lighting :(

On to the look --

- MAC Vibrancy Eye Primer (under the eyes - I always seem to forget this in my posts but it's really always there for me)
- Bobbi Brown Correctors in Bisque (under eyes) and Medium to Dark Bisque (redness around the nose - there hasn't been much in the way of spots lately thanks to my clarisonic :). )
- MUFE Duo Mat Powder Foundation (dusted all over to set the correctors)

- Benefit Hervana Box Powder

- NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base
- Chanel Single Eyeshadow in Fauve
- Urban Decay 24/7 liner in Perversion (tightline)
- Laura Mercier Full Blown Volume Mascara

Nothing - just some kinda lip balm :)

Quick Tip :) : If you're a concealer wearer, primer the under eyes can be just as important as on the lids. When putting down the primer for your eyeshadow, try patting down a bit under the eyes too, it will help your concealer from creasing and wearing away quickly.

First post being done almost entirely on my phone, still trying to decide whether I like this Blogger app...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Face of the Day - February 7, 2012 - "Naturally Pink"

Hi Everyone :)

I realize how washed out the picture of the look is, but hopefully the details of the look and what products were used will help you get a better sense of the effect it gave. This look came along due to me getting my first MAC Mineralized Skin Finish EVER! Considering I've been doing makeup for a few years now, this is pretty shocking. And considering how much I love this one, it's pretty safe to say that's a new addiction that I'm looking forward to. The one I'm talking about is the beautiful MSF in "Blonde" which was released this year with the MAC Naturally collection.

Originally I was tempted to get all 3 blushes in this collection but after getting to swatch them for myself I decided as beautiful as they are, the colors really weren't that unique. I also originally passed this MSF up but after hearing from several people that "Blonde" was actually one of their favorite MSFs (even though they have fairly large collects of MSFs), I decided that I would definitely regret it if I didn't get it. Also, after seeing it in stores a few times, I also realized that I was starting to imagine looks to do with this product.

It really is a beautiful product. The gradient going from a pinky champagne to a rosy pink really does show up even on my medium/olive skin (fyi, I'm about an NC35, going all the way up to NC40 in the summer)and for the last couple of days, I found myself using this for blush and that's it! I'm usually a blush plus highlight sort of girl, so you can just imagine how surprising this was for me. And although this product is shimmery, with the right application, brush, and blending, this works out to be a great every day blush/highlight product.

On to the look --

- Hourglass Mineral Primer
- Laura Mercier Creme Smooth Foundation (stippled, blended, and then gone over with a damp sponge. The coverage on this stuff is insane!)
- Bobbi Brown Corrector in Bisque (under eyes) and Medium to Dark Bisque (around the nose, but barely because of this rather FULL coverage foundation.)
- Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel in 64 Desert Bronze
- Make Up For Ever Duo Mat Foundation Powder in 207 (to set)

- MAC Mineralized Skinfinish in "Blonde"

- NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base
- Wet n Wild Single Shadow in Brulee
- MAC Mineralized Skinfinish in "Blonde" (champagne on the lid, darkest pink blended in to the outer crease)
- Chanel Single Shadow in TigerLily (blended into the pink crease to warm the look up)
- Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-on Pencil in Perversion (tightline)
- Laura Mercier Full Blown Volume Mascara

- Laura Mercier Lip Stain in Shy Pink

Beautiful isn't it? :)

Quick Tip :) : Never skip eyeliner or some kind of lining of the lashline when using pink on your eyelids, this will prevent the look from turning into looking like your eyelids are irritated!

That's it for now! It's been a long night but hopefully I'll get some reviews up soon :)


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Face of the Day - February 5, 2012 - "Meeting the Parents"

Hi Everyone :)

As you can probably tell, there really is no rhyme or reason the lighting of my Face of the Day photos. I should really get on using something other than my iPhone for these things...but I like being able to blog and have everything filed neatly within my phone.

Oh and despite what it might seem, this look was not for meeting my boyfriend's parents. That was years ago :P Rather this was the look I wore this morning to meet my big brother's fiancee's family. I wanted something that was almost a "no-makeup makeup look" but still wanted to define my eyes and make myself look a little less tired than I really was from the late night I had last night. Now, let's see if I can recall what I used huh?

On to the look --

- Chantecaille Just Skin
- Bobbi Brown Corrector in Bisque (under the eyes) & Medium to Dark Bisque (redness around the nose mostly)
- Maybelline Dream Mousse Concealer in Light 4-5 (under the eyes)
- Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel Moisturizing Bronzing Powder in 64 Desert Bronze

- Benefit Hervana Box Powder
- Laura Mercier Illuminator

- NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base
- MAC Paint Pot in Vintage Selection (all over the lid)
- MAC Eye Kohl in Blooz (winged out slightly)
- Milani Liquif'Eye Eyeliner in 01 Black (tightline)

- MAC Lipglass in Prrrr

- Chanel Coco Mademoiselle (fave and signature scent)

I didn't get a chance to take a picture of everything I used today, I was actually running late despite getting up earlier. I will say that lately I've been really enjoying a new hair product which I will share with you all soon; it really saves me time in the morning and I can see it being a product that I won't be able to go without.