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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Elf Haul

My elf haul came this week! I'll try to get detailed reviews up for each item but here's some swatches and first impressions for the eye stuff for now.

Duo Eye Shadow Cream in Black Licorice

Brightening Eye Color in Rocker
(Left to right:) Silvery-white; peachy-gold; nearly matte purple (a bit darker than it looks here); sparkly black. Over primer, no flash.

Brightening Eye Color in Teal Dream
(Left to right:) Cream; shimmery taupe; medium bright blue (a bit brighter than here); teal. Over primer, no flash.

Studio Cream Eye Liner in Black

This is amazing. I put it on my waterline and it lasted through two forty minute bike rides and a five hour shift in a hot, busy kitchen. No running or smudging even with my eyes watering all day from allergies. At the end of the day, just the outer corner was wearing a bit. I can't wait to get every colour.

Monday, April 19, 2010

EOTD: Drama

Here's the latest in my series using elf's brightening eye colors.
Products Used:
Elf Studio Eye Primer & Liner Sealer
Elf Brightening Eye Color in Drama
Elf Liquid Liner in Black
Elf Studio Mineral Infused Mascara in Black

Prime entire eye lid. Then blend the dark grey from the drama quad from the lash line to the crease. Using the silver, blend out the gray above the crease and up to the brow bone. White is used as a brow highlight and to blend the edges of the silver/gray.
Line the upper lash line with black liquid liner and set with the black shadow. Smudge black shadow along lower lash line. Curl your lashes and finish with two coats of black mascara.

That's it! Really quick but it's good for day or night. To make it more of an evening look, just darken the crease with black shadow and blend the gray higher up.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

elf swatches

Pretty n' Pink Brightening Eye Color Quad ($1)The colour on the right is a really gorgeous pink-ish plum. The second from the left is my favourite of this quad. It's a medium warm, almost coral pink. I'm looking for a dupe so I don't have to buy the whole quad when this colour runs out (soon). Adorned with Grace Minerals has a blush that seems close (review and swatches coming).

Luxe Brightening Eye Color Quad ($1)
The red on the left is amazing. It's deep and rusty and a bit metallic. I really only bought this quad for the one colour but the others are good for a more neutral eye. Check out my Luxe EOTD.

Silver Lining Brightening Eye Color Quad ($1)
The lightest colour is a silvery purple, which looks amazing on the inner corner of the eye. The darkest is pretty much black, nothing special. I especially like the pale lilac and the deep grape shades.

Monday, April 12, 2010

elf gift card giveaway

Gaby's Beauty Blog has a giveaway right now for a $25 elf gift card. Details and entry are here.

Xtreme Wear Swatches

As promised, here are the swatches for my newest Xtreme Wear colours. (The first set of swatches is here.)

(Left to right:)
Virtual Violet: Lavender with a blue iridescence. It makes me think of what Lime Lights would be if it were purple, if that makes sense.
Deep Purple: Dark purple with blue and pink shimmer. Brighter than this pic shows, but dark.
Pacific Blue: Medium blue creme. Somewhat darker than this pic. It dries a lot darker than it looks in the bottle.

And, I forgot to mention with the rest of the swatches, my one big issue with these polishes is actually more with the bottle. The caps aren't always consistent. Some are white (I think these are the older ones), some are dark metal, and some are taller and skinnier. Not really a big problem, but it kinda bugs me that they don't all match.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Coming Soon...

Just a quick heads-up on what I have coming up in the next few days. I was at walmart today so I did a bit of a mini-haul. I got a couple new Xtreme Wear polishes (swatches will be up in the next day or two). I also bought two new make up brushes. And that got me thinking I should do a post about my brushes, so I'll try to have that up tomorrow. I also got a couple lip stains from the Fortino's brand, joe fresh style. So, I'll have a review and swatches for those coming up too.

Oh, and I almost forgot: I ordered some more stuff from elf today. I can't wait for it to come. :) So, I'll have a post on that in a couple weeks. AND, I did my first order from Fyrinnae. For weeks I've been browsing the website and oohing and aahing at all the colours. I finally made up my mind what to buy. I think that'll take a bit longer than elf (they explain the wait times on their homepage) but hopefully I'll have that within a month. I love ordering online but I hate waiting.

Friday, April 9, 2010

EOTD: Luxe

Here's another eye look using just elf products. I wasn't going to buy the luxe quad because it looked too neutral but my sister bought it and I fell in love with the red. So I ordered it and I'm so glad I did. Even if I only use that one colour, it's completely worth it.

Products Used:
studio eye primer & liner sealer
brightening eye color in luxe
brightening eye colour in drama
studio mineral infused mascara
brightening eye liner in black

Prime your eyelid up to the brow bone, then apply the lightest colour in the luxe quad from lash line to brow bone. Then apply the red shade on your lid and blend into the crease. Smudge the same red under your lower lashes and in inner corner. Blend the black shade in the drama quad into your crease and use it to line your lower lash line. Use the white shade as a highlight and to blend out the black. To finish up, just use the black eyeliner on your waterline, curl your lashes, and apply two coats of mascara.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

ELF sale!!!

Just wanted to let everyone know that elf is having a sale on their studio line. Just enter coupon code EGSTUDZ at checkout to save 50% (FIFTY PERCENT!!! I'm a little excited- can you tell?) off all studio products. There is a minimum purchase of $20 but trust me it is too easy to spend that.

EOTD: xsparkage cheshire cat inspired

I love xsparkage's youtube tutorials. So I decided to recreate one of her looks but change it up just a little bit. This is done entirely with elf products (except brows--just because I am faithful to my brow powder). And the entire look costs about $15 (another thing I love about elf!). I'll try to do a video for this look, but for now here's some pics.

Products Used:

Shimmering Facial Whip in Persimmon

Studio Under Eye Concealer & Highlighter in Fa
Studio Eye Primer & Liner Sealer
Studio Mineral Infused Mascara

Brightening Eye Color in Punk Funk

Studio High Definition Powder

Liquid Liner in Midnight

I used the concealer under my eyes (obviously) and above my brows, just to give them some definition and set that with HD powder. Then, primed my eyelids and used persimmon as a cream colour base to make the shadows really pop. (Writing that reminded of that
NSYNC song from way back in the it's gonna be stuck in my head.)
Anyway, getting back to this, use the pink from the punk funk quad from the lash line up to the brow bone and the purple over that just to the crease. Then, I used the studio highlighter just under my brow and the lightest shadow to set that and blend out the pink. Line top and bottom (and inner corner) using midnight on an angled brush and set it with the blue shadow. Smudge a bit of purple and pink under your eye, add a couple coats of mascara and you're done.

Monday, April 5, 2010

NOTD: Glitter Gradient Nails

I love gradient nails but solid colours seem a bit intimidating to me so I figured I'd start off with a glitter because it's so forgiving. So here's just a quick how-to for these nails. And I'll work on doing a solid colour gradient.

For this look, I used Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Fashionista Orange but any colour works. Black is especially cool but my nails were already orange when I decided to do this so that's what I went with. I'm pretty sure this colour is discontinued, but Crushed is a good (though not exact) substitute.

Oh, and one last thing before I get started: I used fake nails for this tutorial for two reasons: they are a million times easier to photograph (and to paint, come to think of it) AND I love being able to look back at different looks I've done when I'm feeling in need of inspiration and photos aren't enough.

What You'll Need To Get This Look

Base colour (any colour will do but dark colours tend to show the glitter better)
Glitter polish (I actually use two-Strobe Light and Disco Ball. Using two different sized glitters helps get the gradient without doing tons of coats)
Top/base coat (I rarely bother with this since I change my nails everyday anyway)

First, paint your entire nail with your base colour 2-3 coats. Then, paint just the tip with your bigger/darker glitter polish (Strobe Light). Now, just do a couple more coats with strobe light, going a little bit farther down each time. Once you get about half or two thirds down your nail, switch to the smaller glitter (Disco Ball). Again, move closer to the base of your nail with each coat and paint up to the tip.

Obviously, how much you do with each coat depends on how long your nails are and how gradual of a fade you want. I usually divide the nail into quarters, using strobe light for the top half. If you want to only use one glitter polish just do more coats toward the tip so the difference is more noticeable.

I really want to try doing solid colour gradients, so if anyone has any tips, leave a comment.

elf swatches

Sugar Kiss Shimmer Eye Dust
Blue and green are Dance; black and pink are Ice Skate. This is with no primer--they really don't need it. (edit: I should've mentioned that these were applied with the rollerball included. If you brush them on, they are way less sparkly.)

Studio Eye Transformer
Over black shadow, using studio eye primer and liner sealer. Top is without flash, artificial light. Bottom is with flash. Left to right: green, orange, pink, lavender. I'll try to post a pic without a black base, but they show up so sheer it's hard to get a good photo.

Brightening Eye Colour (Drama)
Over studio primer. With flash. The white is actually a true matte white even though it looks a little gray here. The leftmost black is nearly matte and the rightmost is super sparkly not-quite black.

Brightening Eye Colour (Glam)
Over studio primer. Top is without flash, bottom with flash. The black colour is pretty similar to the sparkly gray in the drama quad, with a bit less sparkle. I haven't been able to get a photo yet that does justice to the colour on the left; it's a gorgeous sandy pink.

Brightening Eye Colour (Nouveau Neutrals)
Over studio primer. Colour on the right is a very pale shimmery blue-green. Not really sure why I bought this quad since I rarely wear neutrals. But they're nice colours if you like earth tones.

Liquid Liner
With flash. Right to left: Black, Midnight, Coffee, Silver, Copper, Stardust, and Stardust over black shadow. Midnight looks pretty much like if you've ever had a pen leak on you. It goes on really dark but dries a bit lighter. Copper and Stardust are just glitter with no base colour. I love Stardust over black; it gives a really cool iridescent effect.

Duo Eyeshadow (Blueberry)
Over studio primer. Left is without flash; right with flash. The darker shade is a shimmery gray with a blue undertone. Lighter shade is pale silvery blue.

Duo Eyeshadow (Berry Mix)
Over primer, no flash. Lighter shade is shimmery barely-there pink. Darker shade is a burgundy with a pinkish-purple-y shimmer.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

elf studio eye primer and liner sealer

I was reviewing the elf studio primer and I was really impressed with it. Then, we got our first really warm day of the year yesterday. I wore the primer under black eye shadow and after a few hours outside and shopping, and just in general running around doing stuff, the colour was creasing. So, this product doesn't always work. I wasn't sure if I should write a completely new review but I finally decided to include my original review. Just keep in mind, if it's really hot or humid out, this won't work as well with really dark colours.

$3 for 2.5g primer and 4g sealer

What elf says: "The Prime side sets your eyeshadow in so your color won’t fade, bleed or crease. The Liner side transforms your favorite eye shadow into a waterproof, smudge-proof liquid liner with this unique clear liquid and built-in felt tip precision eyeliner brush. Now you can have your eye makeup lasting longer for no fuss no budge color."

First off, I love this primer. It keeps shadows from creasing all day and makes colours appear more pigmented. The key to the primer is applying with your finger and blending in well so you have an even base for colour. The liner sealer does a good job of transforming any eye shadow into liner. This is great if you want to match your liner to your shadow, or even just to have more variety without buying a ton of liquid liners. It doesn’t go on quite as smooth as other liquid liners and you can achieve the same effect with a drop of visine and an angled brush, so it’s not really necessary. And, you have to clean off the brush well after each use or it’ll make your colours murky. The container is also pretty awkward to hold when lining your eyes, so altogether I’m not really a fan of the liner sealer. However, definitely buy this for the primer alone.

I guess I'll have to keep looking for an affordable primer to use in the summer. Leave a comment if you know any that work when it's really humid and warm.

(edit: After that one day where this barely worked, I was so disappointed in this primer. Then I used it again yesterday with black shadow and it didn't crease, even through riding my bike about 90 minutes and five hours in a busy, hot kitchen. I even slept with my eye make up still on, and, shockingly, I woke up with no creasing or fading. Hmm. I guess that one day might have been something of an anomaly.)