Orange Cheeks Summer Trend: Asian vs Western Brands

Sunday, July 31, 2011

10 comments
One of the hottest trends for this summer has been that of orange cheeks. In line with all the emphasis on contouring and bronzers we've seen this summer, orange is meant to give a sunkissed, warmed-up glow to the skin. No wonder every other brand has been releasing orange blushes, or if not, variations of the orange colour, like coral.

I thought some of you may be interested in seeing how the orange cheek colour trend is playing out in both Asian and Western brands, so here's a quick look at the colours that are on trend at the moment:

Orange Cheeks Summer Trend

Clockwise, from top: Sleek Aruba Blush 890, Canmake Cream Cheek 12, Canmake Cheek and Cheek No 01, Canmake Powder Cheeks PW27

From Sleek Makeup, we have the epitome of the hot orange summer blush. This colour is pretty much bold, loud, and way out there! I've previously done a review and FOTD with Aruba Blusher, so if you're wondering how it looks on, feel free to click ahead :)

Sleek Aruba Blush Carribean

From the Asian brands, in this case Canmake, a Japanese drugstore brand that has been most aggressive in pursuing the orange cheeks trend, we have not one, but three products, with each of their blush lines receiving an orange-based colour.

The first two products are both powder products - the Canmake Powder Cheeks in PW27, which is a pale pastel orange-peach, and the Canmake Cheek&Cheek in 01, which has your usual pastel pink on one side, and a brighter (but not as bright as Sleek's Aruba blush) orange on the other side.

canmake powder cheek orange products


L-R: Canmake Powder Cheeks PW27, Canmake Cheek & Cheek 01

THe first thing you'll notice is that both these blushes have shimmer. The Cheek&Cheek version has more of it, but it's there too, in the Powder Cheeks shade as well. This is in contrast to the Sleek Aruba shade, which is matte. Shimmer in blushes sells in Asia - I don't know why, because I personally hate shimmer in my blushes.

The second thing you'll notice is that in comparison to Sleek's Aruba Blush, the Asian brands have in general shied away from really bringing out the brights. Instead, they have translated the orange trend into "milky orange", which is basically a lighter, pastel, peachy version of the true orange shade. I'm not surprised at all, since bright shades in general do not sell well in Asia, which is a pain for a huge makeup lover like me. It's hard to find a unique shade of deep purple-taupe when every darn Asian brand is selling the same shade of gritty, glittery, pastel pink eyeshadow! I mean, of course these brands need to cater to the market, but jeez, you'd think someone would try to put out colours that appealed to the non-pastel, non-glitter wearing rest-of-us in general!

Just to prove my point, here's a shot of Canmake's Powder Cheeks PW27 beside Sleek's Aruba. As you can see, Aruba really stands out beside PW27:

sleek aruba blush vs canmake powder cheeks pw27


Anyway, the next shade that follows the "milky orange" trend is Canmake's Cream Cheek in shade 12 (I'm not sure what the English name is at the moment). I've swatched the Canmake Cream Cheek blushes before, and in fact, I think Canmake's Cream Cheek in Vitamin Orange 04 would probably fit the "orange cheeks" trend better than their own Milky Orange 12 shade, since Vitamin Orange is a bright orange. But other than the fact that one is cream, and one is a powder, I don't see much difference in shade between the Canmake Powder Cheeks PW27 and Canmake Cream Cheek 12. The photo below shows how similar they are:

canmake orange coral cheek products


So, which version of the orange cheeks trend do I like better? To be honest, the shades are so different, it's almost like comparing apples and oranges, isn't it? Both are great shades, and although I personally prefer Sleek's version of the bright orange vision better, for those who are more colour-shy, Canmake's milky orange is also a good way of wearing the orange cheeks trend. Which one do you prefer?

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

Beauty Blog Link Love

Saturday, July 30, 2011

1 comment
Musicalhouses shows you an awesome Bird of Paradise/sunset inspired eye look using the Sleek Curacao Palette - possibly the brightest eye look ever!

Beauty's Bad Habit shows gorgeous eyeshadow swatches of her first love in indie cosmetics, the fabulous Fyrinnae Cosmetics.

You know that cooling sensation when you bite into a peppermint patty? Well it's the same thing when you use the Chantecaille Aquablush in Charming. The Pink Sith explains.

At theNotice, Rae reviews a Benefit BADgal waterproof liner and decides that if bad girls all have to wear BADgal... she'd rather just be good.

Check out the new Too Faced Matte Eye Shadow Collection from Too Faced. Gouldylox has swatches and details.

Addicted to Beauty is still dreaming about the crazy hair extravaganza that was the L’Oreal Professionnel Colour Trophy 2011 .

Phyrra's Independent Spotlight for the month of July is One Hand Washes the Other.

Check out Smashinbeauty's Return to Paradise review and swatches.

Tracy at Beauty Reflections wishes Tarte For True Blood Natural Cheek Stain was Hellmouth worthy!

The Beauty Spot tested out the new Rimmel Vinyl Max Lipgloss. See how it worked out!

Have you ever considered Juvederm? Read about the experience of Marcia at Beauty Info Zone to learn whether Juvederm is something that would work for you.

Love bright eye shadows for summer? Make sure to keep lips subtle with this fabulous nude lipstick at Makeup, Beauty and More.

Do you need to perk up your under eye area? Pammy Blogs Beauty's Cover-It Concealer Review series continues with a review of this under eye treatment/primer by Per-fekt.

Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed swatches Chanel nail polish to prove that all greys are not created equal!

Read the MAC and Sigma brushes dupe guide at Handmade Reviews.

Take a trip to St-Tropez! Nicole from Lipstick and Luxury swatches this limited-edition luxurious nail polish from Dior.

What type of results REALLY come from having a Brazilian Keratin Treatment? Check out Socialite Dreams for the results of the KeraStraight treatment at Ulta.

Aquatic Blue and Yellow Eye Look with Sleek Curacao Palette

Thursday, July 28, 2011

25 comments
Sleek Makeup's Curacao Palette has definitely established itself as the one bright palette of summer you absolutely HAVE to get, if you are only getting just one bright palette. What's not to like? There is such a range of eye looks you can create, since this palette has a whole rainbow of bright, bold shades - pinks, yellow, blues, greens, and purples.

Following my last sunset/bird of paradise eye look, which was quite intense, I decided that today's eye look should be cooler and well, more aquatic looking! Hence, today's blue and yellow eye look - a combination of sunshine and pools!

Sleek Curacao Aquatic Blue Yellow Eye Look

The shades that I used are shown below. The shade names are Martini, the light beige, Blue Lagoon, the light matte sky blue, Screwdriver, the bright matte yellow, and Green Iguana, the shimmery deep forest green.

sleek curacao palette aqua blue yellow eye look shades


I applied Martini on my brownbone as a highlighter, Screwdriver on the inner third of my lid, Blue Lagoon on the middle of my lid, and Green Iguana on the outer corner and crease area. Here's a shot of the eye closed, so you can have a better look at colour placement:

sleek curacao aquatic blue yellow eye look 2


I like this eye look, but unlike my previous sunset/bird of paradise inspired eye look, the matte shades were a littleharder to blend than the shimmer shades - just by a bit. You can kind of see this from the lack of blending between the blue and the yellow shades on my lid - but then again, it is kind of hard to blend blue and yellow, or any complementary colours in general, because they tend to muddy up so easily.

sleek curacao aquatic blue yellow eye look 3


All in all, I think I really like this look! I love how it reminds me of sunshine, summer, and pool water, and I love that the yellow and blue are matte shades that still pack a punch! I'm also really pleased with my Sleek Makeup Curacao Palette - although I'm not normally a brights kinda girl, I think the more I use it, the more I love it for its sheer versatility!

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

Sleek Makeup Carribean Collection Aruba Blush: Swatch and FOTD

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

15 comments
One of the key trends this summer has been that of orange and coral face colours. Of course, Sleek Makeup has come out with just the thing to indulge your craving for an on-trend cheek colour without breaking the bank! The Aruba Blush, part of Sleek Makeup's Carribean Collection, is the perfect shade of trendy summery orange going on right now. Just look at all that pigment!

Sleek Aruba Blush Carribean

I don't know about you, but I was a bit surprised when I first opened this. I mean, Aruba is perhaps as neon as a blush probably can get! This is easily the loudest, brightest, boldest blush colour I've seen - it would seriously put even the famed NARS shades to shame! Come to think of it, Aruba does kind of remind me of NARS Taj Mahal, although I'm not sure if they are dupes or not. But for a fraction of the exorbitant NARS price, Sleek Makeup's Aruba Blush is definitely in the same colour category, being also a bright orange-based blush.

Sleek Aruba Blush box


I know I've said this before, but I love the design on the Sleek Carribean Collection. Just look at the cute little illustrations of a boat and a palm tree. Feels like summer, doesn't it? Other than the cute design, the packaging is pretty much the same as the other Sleek Makeup blushes, consisting of a sturdy plastic case and a small mirror in the lid.

sleek aruba blush pan


As you can see from the photo above, the colour in the pan looks really scary - I thought it would be too dark or bright or just too neon for me! So I gingerly swatched it:

sleek aruba blush swatch


There, not so bad, right? The blush can be intense, but once blended out it can leave a sheer wash of colour. I'm thinking for warm-toned girls, this colour would look really pretty on. On cooler-toned girls, the orange hue can look a little weird, since the shade clearly leans warm, but if blended out, can still be wearable. After all, orange is one of the hot shades this summer.

Finally, I worked up the courage to actually try it out on my face:

sleek aruba blush fotd


There, it wasn't half as bad as I thought! When sheered out, it can definitely be used on paler girls as well. I think good application and blending is key - you definitely want to use only a little bit at a time, and blend it well. Given how little I used, I think this blush is going to last me forever, making it really great value for money.

If you're looking for a trendsetting colour, and want something cheap, or just want a more affordable version of NARS Taj Mahal, this is definitely worth checking out. If good-quality pigmented blushes are your thing (and they're definitely mine), the entire Sleek Makeup range of blushes in general would definitely be your cup of tea too.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

For Beloved One Melasleep Whitening Bio-Cellulose Mask Review

Monday, July 25, 2011

6 comments
For Beloved One is a Taiwanese skincare brand that is most famous for its masks, which are apparently used by its local celebrities including Barbie Hsu(大S), Annie Yi(伊能靜), and Niu Er (牛爾). One of its best-selling masks is the Melasleep Whitening Bio-Cellulose Mask, which features what the company calls is a "bio-cellulose" texture - meaning that instead of using plain ol' paper like the rest of them cheapo masks do, this expensive mask (S$63.00 or US$45 for a box of three pieces) is made of some biological fiber material, whatever that is. This mask has style, baby!

The mask itself comes in a clean-looking, sleek white box. Unfortunately the box got a bit dinged on its way to me. But it still looks cool, right? Unlike most Asian brands, which tend to drench themselves in cutesy packaging, For Beloved One keeps it clean and simple.

for beloved one melasleep whitening mask


The individual mask packs (yes, that's S$21 for each pack here) comes in a sealed pack, and the design is exactly like that of the box.



The mask claims to have three awesome ingredients in it that will brighten and whiten your skin: Lumiskin, Melaclear, and Matrixyl. Now terms like that are just marketing jargon, of course, (you know, much like the "Age Rewind Complex" from Maybelline's Age Rewind line, or Pond's "Derma-Recovery Complex" from its Time Rewind Wrinkle Cream) but a closer look at the ingredients shows that they are just a bunch of other ingredients - fatty acids (Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride), glycerin, water, as well as some ingredients that may help with skin brightening, and are usually used in cosmetic products for skin whitening or pigmentation (Diacetyl Boldine, dithia octanediol). The good thing is that they at least bothered to make the active ingredients the top three ingredients in the list, so they probably aren't skimping on the good stuff in this mask.

for beloved one melasleep whitening mask ingredients


This is what you see when you first open the packet of mask. You get one layer of mask, sandwiched between a papery layer and a plastic foil, and the mask is swimming in the facial essence, which is a milky white liquid.

for beloved one melasleep whitening mask inside


Anyway, I did mention that one interesting thing about the mask was its selling point of being made of a "bio-cellulose" (another marketing jargon there) material. What this means is that the mask is actually not made of paper, but some filmy substance that kind of feels like a thin layer of jelly. It reminds me of that agar jelly substrate we had in petri dishes back in the days when I was still in school. It kind of has that squishy feel. Here's a shot of the mask material:

for beloved one melasleep whitening mask material

One thing I liked about this mask was that because the mask material wasn't made of paper, it felt a lot less flimsy than other masks I've tried. In fact, the manufacturers claim that the mask naturally sticks to your skin, and you can walk around with your mask on your face. I tried that, and I think they're right. Because the mask is made of this film-y material, it adheres to the skin better. I was essentially working on the computer while using the mask.

Here's a really unglam shot of me wearing the mask. Look, ma, the mask is actually staying on!

for beloved one melasleep whitening mask face


After application, the mask leave behind a film of liquid on your face, which takes awhile to sink in. The instructions on the package encourage you to continue with the rest of your skincare routine without washing off the mask residue. After usage, I did feel like my skin looked a little brighter. However, I personally felt like it was better when I washed it off, because when the residue was left on my face for too long, my skin seemed to react to it in a negative manner, with my pimples experiencing some swelling. I'm not sure exactly what ingredient it was, but my skin is usually ridiculously sensitive, so it could have been anything. I doubt mosts people would have this sort of reaction to a mask.

Anyway, at S$21 for each application, this mask isn't cheap. I personally believe that you don't have to spend a fortune on good skincare (and in fact, some of the best skincare products I've come across aren't actually expensive), but I do think this mask has some good points going for it if you're willing to splurge. For one, I like the fact that it clings to your skin when applied, so you don't have to lie around comatose on your bed when using this mask. I also feel that enough thought and care has been put into the ingredients to make them work, and the mask seemed effective enough on me. If price isn't an issue, this mask would be worth checking out.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

Sleek Curacao Multicolour Sunset/Bird of Paradise Eye Look

Saturday, July 23, 2011

25 comments
The more I play around with my awesome new Sleek Curacao Palette, the more I think its bright shades are starting to grow on me. Although I didn't think I would reach for this palette, I'm starting to really love the wide variety of looks and effects its rainbow of brights can produce. Just look at today's eye look! Is that hot or what? I've actually done a previous sunset inspired eye look, but I think this look just blows it out of the water!

Sleek Curacao Sunset Green Multicolour

Jamilla Camel actually commented that this look reminded her of the Bird of Paradise plant, and you know what - I think she's right! So here's a photo of the Bird of Paradise plant, just so you know what I mean. Don't you think it sort of looks like the plant, with the same mix of colours? I've even gone back to change the blog post title, just because I love the comparison so much!

Image from thaifoodandtravel.com


Surprisingly, I didn't actually have to use 99 shades to get such a vibrant effect, which is really impressive. I did use four colours from the Sleek Makeup Curacao Palette, though. The colour names used are Tequila Sunset, the shimmery rust orange, Martini, the pale light beige, Green Martini, the deep shimmery olive geen, and Singapore Sling, the bright hot pink!

sleek curacao palette sunset green eye look

I know the colours don't look all that blended in the phoot, but I promise they look better in real life! Singapore Sling was used on the inner corner of my eyelid, while Tequila Sunset was used on the lid (mostly in the middle). Green Martini was used in the contour area, and Martini was used as a highlight. The shot below shows my closed eye, so that you can get a better sense of colour placement.

sleek curacao multicolour sunset eye look 1


For this look, I actually didn't have much problem blending the eyeshadows. I was actually a little surprised by how blendable they were. I was half-expecting to end up with all these big blocks of colour on my eyes given that I was cramming so many colours onto my puny little eye space, but the end result turned out better than I expected!

sleek curacao multicolour sunset eye look 2


Don't you love how vibrant the colours look? This is definitely one of my favourite looks using the Curacao Palette, and perhaps the look that demonstrates just how awesome the palette is. I am totally thrilled with this look, and I don't think I can say much more about it - it's just so absolutely, steaming, flaming hot! With all the connotations of sunset and greenery (hey, there is some olive green in the eye look after all), I feel that this eye look really brings out that feeling of a summer sizzle!

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

Aqua and Purple Eye look with Sleek Curacao Palette!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

22 comments
I'm so excited about this eye look, because I think for possibly the first time ever in my life, I'm wearing aqua eye shadow! I'm normally a colour-shy, neutrals-only kind of girl, but thanks to Sleek Makeup's Curacao Palette, I now have a whole rainbow of brights to play around with!



The photo below shows the shades that I used for this eye look. I decided to use Blue Hawaiian, that awesome blue-green aqua shade I was raving about when I swatched the Curacao Palette, and I paired it up with my favourite colour ever - purple! Purple Haze is the shade name.

sleek curacao palette aqua purple eye look shades


The photo below shows the closed eye so you can get a better sense of colour placement. Blue Hawaiian, the light (but bright!) aqua shade was placed on the lid, and Purple Haze was used in the contour area and the outer corner of the eye. Martini, the light beige in the palette, was used as a highlight colour.

sleek curacao palette aqua purple eye look 1


I love how the colours blended so nicely. I especially love that although I used just two colours for the lid and contour area, the look somehow looks more complex than that - it kinda looks like I used more than two colours, doesn't it?

sleek curacao palette aqua purple eye look 2


I'm not normally a brights kind of girl, but I definitely appreciate having such beautiful shades to play around with! I love how this looks cool yet intense at the same time - something about the combination of light, floaty aqua with a deep smokey purple, and is still summery while having some oomph. I definitely can't wait to try out more looks with this palette, and see what other combinations I can come up with!

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

Sleek Makeup Curacao Palette Swatches

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

18 comments
The hottest, brightest, boldest palette of summer is here! And it's mine! All mine! Sleek Makeup's Curacao is officially the loudest, brashest set of colour you can wear on your eyes. Just look at all that brightly coloured goodness!

Sleek Curacao Palette

The Curacao Palette is part of the Carribean Collection, out for this Summer. It's supposed to be full of bright, happy, confident colours - like a Carribean holiday! I've never been to the Carribean, but hey, now I can pretend that I'm on a holiday just by looking at the tropical-looking box!

sleek curacao palette 1


Box aside, I'm so glad to see that Sleek Makeup has nammed all the colours in the palette - previously their palettes didn't have colour names, so I think this is pretty cool. Coming from Singapore, I especially love that there's a hot magenta pink colour called Singapre Sling - I know it's named after the cocktail, and not the country, but hey, it's still cool, right?

sleek curacao palette 2


1st Row, L-R: Tequila Sunrise (warm russet orange, shimmer), Martini (shimmery light neutral beige), Blue Hawaiian (a pale but bright blue-green aqua), Bloody Mary (matte primary red), Screwdriver (bright matte crayon yellow), Green Iguana (shimmery deep forest green)

2nd Row, L-R: Apres Midori (shimmmery yellow grass green), Blue Lagoon (matte light aqua blue), Purple Haze (deep matte grape), Green Martini (shimmery deep olive green), Singapore Sling (shimmery hot pink), Espresso Martini (matte black)

My favourite shades out of the palette are Blue Hawaiian - it reminds me of China Glaze's For Audrey, but in eyeshadow form! I think if I ever did my China Glaze For Audrey manicure again, I can totally wear Blue Hawaiian to go with it! I also love Green Martini, because it's the perfect deep shimmery olive green with a great deal of complexity.

And here's a shot of the colours without the plastic sheet over it. Aren't the colours gorgeous?

sleek curacao palette 3


And of course, what kind of blogger would I be if I didn't offer you swatches, so here you go! Swatches of the Curacao Palette!

sleek curacao palette swatch


As you can see, the palette has pretty good pigmentation and texture, much like the other Sleek Makeup palettes. However, I did feel like the shimmer shades were softer and a bit more pigmented than the matters, like other Sleek palettes I've tried. If you've liked the previous palettes produced by Sleek Makeup, you'll definitely love the Curacao Palette as well, as the formula hasn't changed - this is pretty much the same thing, but with a zing and a zest in the bright shades!

Over the next few days, I'll be producing a few eye looks with the Curacao Palette, so do keep a watch out for those - I'm pretty excited about the wide variety of looks this little baby can produce, and I can't wait to share them with you!

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

TheNatureLab Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask: Does It Work?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

9 comments
TNL (short for The Nature Lab) is a Korean brand of skincare that has recently launched one of its star products, the Oxygen Shield Mask, in Singapore. It's a foaming mask whose selling point is that it helps to deliver oxygen to your skin. This is supposed to help improve circulation, and bring about a whole slew of skin benefits, from whitening and brightening to improving skin texture.

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask Box


First things first, the science is clear that injecting oxygen into your skin doesn't actually help it, so all the masks selling oxygen as an anti-aging therapy are just doing it as a marketing gimmick. Sure the mask does foam, but it doesn't deliver oxygen to your skin (it's just air bubbles, people, not special oxygen bubbles), or help improve blood circulation or anything. It's just fun to see a mask bubble, I guess.

In fact, if the mask really introduced oxygen into your skin, it would seriously damage the skin, since oxygen is a free radical and is actually aging to skin - that's why we have a whole line of anti-oxidants to combat the oxidative reactions brought about by these free radicals. So any oxygen-based skincare is just a marketing gimmick. The Bliss Triple Oxygen Mask is another such mask using a similar marketing strategy, so it's not just TheNatureLab.

Thenaturelab oxygen shield bubble mask

The mask comes in a sensible pump tube, and in a sturdy yellow plastic bottle and a brown box. All in all, the packaging is sensible and sturdy.

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask pump


The mask out of the pump is a clear gel, with a few bubbles in it. Ooh, look, bubbles! The gel is clear and light, and odourless.

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask 1


The instructions for using this mask are quite complex. First you're supposed to apply the gel on your face, then leave it on for a few minutes. The mask then starts foaming, with little bubbles appearing. This, of course, is the "oxygen bubbles" they're trying to sell - but really, they're just air bubbles. Then again, air is 20% oxygen, so I guess they aren't entirely wrong, LOL!

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask 2


After that, you're supposed to massage this foam into your face, and let your skin absorb all that "oxygen goodness". When you massage the foam into your face, it sort of breaks up, and forms a thin film on your skin, as you can see in the photo below.

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask 3


After this, you're supposed to wet your palm slightly and massage the mixture into your skin. The water mixes with the mask to form this thin, colourless film on your skin.

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask 4


Lastly, you're supposed to wash the film off. It foams as you wash it off.

To be honest, after I used this mask, I didn't feel like my skin had improved. In fact, I didn't feel any effects whatsoever. Perhaps I had too thick a hide for this mask to work, but I felt like it was more of a cleanser than a mask - it cleaned the skin and removed dirt, but didn't do anything more. So, I decided to dig deeper into the product to find out why it didn't work for me.

And as you know me, the first place I stopped to look was nowhere else other than the ingredients list. And here I think I've found my answer:

TNL Oxygen Shield Bubble Mask Ingredients


When I look at ingredients lists, I usually focus on the first 5-7 ingredients in the list, as those are the ingredients that make up most of the product, and the rest of the ingredients are usually added in tiny amounts. In this product, the first few ingredients are water, cocoamidolpropyl betain, disodium cocoamphodiacetate, chamaecyparis obtusa water, glycerin, and cocamide DEA.

Here's a breakdown of the ingredients:

Water, chamaecyparis obtusa water: Okay, we know this one as water.

Cocoamidolpropyl betain, disodium cocoamphodiacetate, cocamide DEA: These are all surfactants, which are the foaming agents in the product. They are what makes the product foam, and are most commonly found in shampoos and soaps.

Glycerin: This is a hydrating ingredient to the skin, when combined with water.

As you can see, the Oxygen Sheild Bubble Mask is really mosstly comprised of a bunch of surfactants, water and glycerin. So when you use the mask, all that's really happening is you're workiong up a lot of foam, but the only ingredients that are really working on your skin are the glycerin and water combination, which moisturize the skin. The surfactants just add to the cosmetic appeal of the product. No wonder why this product didn't work for me!

I wanted to like this product, but I couldn't help but feel a little disappointed by it. And yes, this is indeed a product that was provided by PR people for review, but I simply can't cook up a positive review when that's not my honest opinion. To me, the mask appeared to be mostly surfactants and water, and I felt that the formulation of the mask was poor, as more attention appeared to be paid to the bubbling hype, and not enough attention was given to the actual beneficial effects of the mask. The good thing about this is that it does cleanse the skin, and is quick to use - the whole foaming process takes only a few minutes. If you like the idea of cute little bubbles and want a simple basic mask, this is for you. But sadly, I can't say this mask worked for me. But if you're interested in trying this out for yourself, you can LIKE The Nature Lab Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/TheNatureLab )& play the Spot & Win game to win a bottle of Oxygen Shield Mask worth S$48.90.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I got this for review, and I actually said I was disappointed by it, so obviously I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

Beauty Blog Link Love

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Read a thorough and honest review of Sigma's new eyeshadow palettes in Dare, Bare, and Flare at Handmade Reviews!

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Lauren from Lovelaughlauren shows us some fab makeup brushes for less than £20!

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The Pretty Exclusive shows you beautiful swatches of Geek Chic Cosmetic's N7 Collection & Geek Love Duo, AND has a giveaway to win them all!

Pammy Blogs Beauty is giving away Clinical Organics "Try Me" Packs to two lucky winners! Visit Pammy Blogs Beauty for more details and to enter.

Canmake Shimmer Jelly Eyes Cream Eyeshadow Swatches

Saturday, July 16, 2011

5 comments
Canmake, the Japanese drugstore cosmetics brand, typically produces ranges of products aimed squarely at the Asian market - with tons of shimmer, frost, and cutesy packaging, the brand does not deviate much from the typical formulas used to appeal to Asian consumers.

With Canmake's range of cream eyeshadows, the Shimmer Jelly Eyes Cream Eyeshadows, these are slightly different. The Shimmer Jelly Eyes, as the name suggests, are full of shimmer, but most colours don't have many visible specks of glitter, just frosty shimmer.

Image from http://bobodave.com


Here are swatches of the products. Look ma, almost no huge bits of glitter, just tiny ones! The frost is still there though, as is the somewhat weaker pigmentation I tend to find in Asian brands.

Canmake Shimmer Jelly Eyes Cream Eyeshadow Swatches

01 White Frosty is a sheer white frost
02 Sugar Milk Tea is a light tan brown, also frosty and sheer
03 Strawberry Parfaiit is a sheer, shimmery, pastel pink
04 Frozen Melon is blue-based pastel green. Doesn't look like the colour of a melon at all, but a very pretty aqua blue-green.
05 Caramel Chocolate was a rich, deep, chocolate brown. This is the least glittery of the lot.

My favourite out of the lot is 05 Caramel Chocolate, because it has the best pigmentation, and the least amount of grittery glitter. Most of the shades are sheer, and have tiny specks of glitter, especially the lighter colours. I really liked that the shadows started off with a fluid finish, but dried fast. After leaving them to set for 5 - 10 minutes, I found that the colours stayed on and did not remove easily. But if rubbed hard, these could be removed, so if you have a habit of rubbing your eyes, this isn't a great choice for you. However, if you don't rub your eyes, chances are this would last pretty decently on you.

Liz Earle Sheer Gold Shimmer: Summer Up Your Skin

Thursday, July 14, 2011

3 comments
Liz Earle has come out with a great summer goody - the Liz Earle Sheer Gold Shimmer! This is a lotion with gold shimmer thaat can be applied to skin, to sexy up your skin with a little bit of sheen. I thought I'd show you guys this product, since it seemed perfect for summer.

The Sheer Gold Shimmer comes in a sensible transparent plastic tube, with a twist-off plastic top. Simple and easy. From the plastic tube, you can see the individual shimmer particles inside the product, so the shimmer in there isn't exactly super-fine.

Liz Earle Sheer Gold Gold Shimmer

The product is also quite watery in texture, making it different from other shimmer lotions I've encountered, which tend to have a thicker, more gel-like texture. This one is pretty fluid, so you can layer on as little or as much as you'd like. It also has the smell of your typical Liz Earle product - it smells sort of herbal, which I quite like.

Here are some product swatches:

liz earle sheer gold shimmer swatch


As you can see from the swatches, the product isn't as shimmery as I thought it would have been. While I do think the individual glitter bits are probably a bit too big for full-on use all over the face, this product will probably be perfect on your legs, cheekbones, arms, etc. It's also perfect for that since it's watery texture feels light on the skin.

I think that this would especially useful for people who would like a small tube of shimmer lotion to carry around, and apply on the go. For the rest of us, a lightweight, shimmery gold lotion would also be great for this summer season.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

NYX Smokey Eyes Eyeshadow Palette: Awesome Neutral Colours!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

9 comments
The latest addition to my palette collection is definitely a kickass one - I officially have gotten my hands on the NYX Smokey Eyes Eyeshadow Palette! As you know, NYX Cosmetics is pretty hard to get here in Asia, so I just have to show off! By a stroke of luck, I won it on Makeup Merriment's giveaway awhile back, and, boy am I glad to have this!

NYX Smokey Eyes Eyeshadow Palette

Isn't this thing gorgeous? It's so pretty, I can't bear to touch it yet - but I will eventually!

It comes in the cutest paper box, with a very alluring photo of a smokey eye. The Smokey Palette comes in a simple plastic packaging.

nyx xmokey eyes palette 1


Here are the colours all laid out for you in their beautiful glory. I love how there are a bunch of awesome TAUPES in there, along with the standard range of greys.

nyx xmokey eyes palette 2


Have any of you used this palette yet? I'm so excited, I can't wait to get to use this palette and show you guys the awesome colours in the palette!

BeautyUK Shatter Polish: Swatches, Review, NOTD

Sunday, July 10, 2011

8 comments
The BeautyUK Shatter Polishes have landed! And once BeautyUK puts them out, they do not one, but three amazing colours! The Shatter Polish comes in three colours, Goth, which is a matte black, Glam Rock, which is a silver with a foil finish, and Punk, which is a matte hot pink. A matte hot pink - can you imagine that? I'm excited!

BeautyUK Shatter Polish

Anyway, I'm sure you don't want me to blabber on unnecessarily, so without further ado, here are swatches!

First of all, let's take a look at Goth. This is a pure black, simple as that. Here it is over another drugstore brand, Collection 2000 Aztec Gold. I rather like this combination!

beautyuk shatter polish goth


One of the things I found when applying Goth was that it really shatters into tiny bits, thus displaying very prominently the colour underneath. So if you would like the under-colour to be more visible, this is a great one to choose. However, I found it a little clumpy even in the bottle, and hard to work with. It was a little difficult to get an even coat on the nail. Still, the effect it gave was gorgeous.

beautyuk shatter polish goth 2


The next colour is Glam Rock, which is silver foil. I was so excited for this, as the large majority of matte polishes up to now have been mattes, so it was great to see them come in other finishes! Here it is over Boots No. 7 Totally Teal. I love how the deep teal base makes the silver just pop!

beautyuk shatter polish glam rock


Like the Goth shatter polish, I found this a little tricky to work with. However, it wasn't as lumpy as Goth for some reason, and I applied it with reasonable ease. Another thing I noticed was that this didn't "split" as much as Goth did. When I wore Goth, you could see big patches of the base colour showing through where the polish had split. Here, the gaps were much smaller, and if you apply too thick a coat, the polish won't shatter very nicely. You can see this on my index finger, where the shattering effect was pathetic as the coat was too thick. A little goes a long way with this one.

beautyuk shatter polish glam rock (2)


Lastly, we have Punk! I was so excited for Punk - after all, how many hot pink shatter polishes are there out there? So I just had to try this. Here it is over Wet n Wild Quartz of Course. On hindsight, maybe I could have picked a more contrasting colour to pair Punk with, but hey, it still looks gorgeous right? And I'm not sure how clear it is from the photos, but Punk is HOT NEON PINK! Woohoo! Retina-searing, breath-bating, ice-melting hot pink! Such a beauty.

beautyuk shatter polish punk


I personally felt that Punk was the easieset out of all the three polishes to apply - it wasn't lumpy in the bottle, and application was good. I had no issues with this. As you can see in the photos, it also shattered very nicely, and I didn't have big bald patches or tiny shatter lines. As with most shatter polishes, though, the thicker the coat, the larger the shatter pieces.

beautyuk shatter polish punk 2


Since I'm a huge fan of shatter polishes, I'm absolutely in love with BeautyUK's latest offerings. Goth, as your standard black shatter, has been done before by other brands, but I especially love Punk and Glam Rock, both of which are of good quality and are unique in the colours. I don't see many coloured shatters by readily avaialble drugstore brands, so these are definitely worth checking out.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)

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