Sunday, March 24, 2013

Retro daytime look

I forget exactly what I used for this - but I know that Makeup Geek eyeshadows were involved, Urban Decay Mildew liner, and Morgana Cryptoria Wild Strawberry lipstick over a red Milani lipliner.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sephora + Pantone Universe first impressions

I went to Sephora today to get an in-person look at the new(ish) Color of the Year collection from Sephora + Pantone Universe. This year's color is Emerald, or, green. I love green! Here's a photo of the swatches I took in the best light I could find - the sun filtering through clouds in the parking lot:

Let's look at the left: from my pinkie knuckle down to the green lines is one of the shadow trios. I like the green, and the white is ok. I think the blurple would make me look like I'd gotten in real good with some fists. If the blurple took up the tiny corner and the matte green took up all the space that the blurple does, then I would buy this. Because the biggest color is make-me-look-like-I-like-barfights-blurple, I will probably pass.

Next to that is the most neutral of the three trios. There's a shimmery beige, a matte tan, and a shimmery green. I like this one. It's basic with a pop of color. It's my second favorite. 

The third trio is the one I like the most: it's got an antiqued gold, a forest green shimmer, and another emerald color. This is a green smoky eye in a box. I am a sucker for those dark greens, and I love it. This is the one I'm most likely to buy. 

The green lines are a collection of liquid liners that are all somewhat different from each other. I like two of them (the ones on the right), but a **** ton of one color liner isn't my cup of tea. I would have rather they concentrated on one or two really good colors and sold them individually. 

The large green splotches are two of their cream products. The lid stain (in the little pot) has beeswax, so I'm not even swatching that. The larger green swatch is a cream shadow that comes in a small compact. I like this. It has really nice pigmentation and some subtle shimmer. To the right of that swatch, I tried out the glitter. The glitter has no base to it, so you need to use it on top of a cream shadow. Even then, it fades. The smaller green dot is the jumbo waterproof pencil. Also quite nice. 

There are a lot of other things with this collection that look pretty interesting, too. They have a blush that looks pretty idiot-proof and is nice and neutral. There's a brush set in a fancy case. The brushes themselves are really nice, but the case (except for the decorative panel on the front) is cheap cardboard. I also like the large makeup case.

What do you think about Emerald?

Saturday, March 9, 2013

February Empties

Studio 35 Beauty Acetone: works great, cheap, effective. I usually mix in some glycerin and water. I think Sally's has even cheaper acetone, though.

Softsoap Juicy Apple body wash. Good if you like dry, itchy skin and bright pink bubbles. I mixed this with a minty body wash and liked it more that way.

Butter London Hardwear topcoat: The first half of this bottle worked pretty well. The second half got thick and required lots of thinner. Even then, it left brittle strings trailing from my nails to the bottle. An $18 topcoat should not do that.

First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads: These are Holy Grail for me. I tried a cheaper alternative and the jawline acne started to come back. I'll continue with what works, thanks. Now, I'm on my third jar of these.

E.L.F. nail polish remover pads. I still have one more of these sitting unopened. Now that they're two bucks instead of one, I won't be buying more.

L'Óreal miracle blur finishing cream sample - I liked this enough to buy a full size, but I'm starting to question why. I need to work with it some more.

Repechage samples: I actually really liked the mask. Maybe not quite enough to pay full price, but it did seem to decongest and brighten somewhat. The scrub was so-so. I have definitely tried others I liked a lot better.

Random lotion samples: Meh. I am glad they're out of the house!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

No buy progress

This year for Lent, I decided to stop buying anything related to beauty. No makeup, no hair stuff, no skincare, no nothing. I have enough of everything to last me a while, and I wanted to see if I could quit buying stuff I didn't really need and make myself more aware of my purchases. See, I've bought too many things that just didn't work out, or I haven't ended up using as much as I thought I would.

(incidentally, I have a very lightly used UD Vice Palette for sale - $39+ shipping)

So, I really wanted to commit to a longer no-buy than the month-long ones I've done in the past, which often included exceptions for a category or two. Nothing but nail polish? Guess what I got a lot of that month. So far, I have stuck to my guns and not bought anything since Ash Wednesday, which was on February 12 this year. I did get two nail polishes as a gift for Valentine's Day, and I did get my March Julep Maven box because I'd accumulated enough points to get that for free. But I will not use actual money to purchase any product intended to beautify my body until April 1, at the earliest.

I am hoping to get a better idea of what kinds of products I genuinely love, so I can make better choices about future purchases. A lot of beauty blogs seem focused on buying the newest, greatest thing (which is awesome), but I want Emily's Makeup Box to focus more on color combinations and look ideas for different situations. For now, forcing myself to think about why I want to buy things is helping clear my head and focus more on other areas of my life. My thesis defense is finally scheduled for the end of this month, I have seven more months to plan my wedding, and I want to be more focused on starting this next, exciting phase of my life than on tracking down the newest palette.

Anyone else on a no buy right now?