Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Cut Out Heart Nails Inspired by McQueen

Today's nails are inspired by the late great designer, Alexander McQueen.

These high fashion heels are McQueens Valentine heels in red patent leather with navy blue soles.  

The peep toe has an extra added romantic twist as it is shaped like a heart.

For my nails I used Zoya Riley for a plum-maroon shade as the base.  While the polish was wet I dipped a straight edge small brush in acetone.  Using the brush it was a few swipes to wipe away the polish to create a heart shaped cut out of my own. 

I was thinking about nude (like toes!) but upgraded to gold instead using Essie's As Gold As It Gets for the smaller center heart.  

I think McQueen would approve.  Would you sport this cutout heart look for Valentine's Day?

Sunday, January 19, 2014

January Wantable Box 2014

This month I'm adding another subscription box to my monthly mail haul.  Wantable is a higher end subscription service that has three options: intimates, beauty or accessories.  

I of course went with beauty.  This box was sent my way for the purpose of review.  Wantable differs from other subscription services in that they are higher end.  They will include four to five full size products each month for $36 a month with a subscription (cancel or skip anytime) or you can purchase a one time box for $40.  The running of three separate options is very interesting and gives you a wide array of choices.  Unlike many other subscriptions, with Wantable if you don't like your box you can return it!  Finally, each box is super personalized.  As you sign up you can either love, like or dislike specific items and colors like eyeliner, blush, nail polish, brights, etc.  Wantable will never send you an item on your dislike list.  

First look inside is a receipt of the products that were included in my box this month as well as a list of my loves, likes and dislikes.  My loves are: fair (for my skin tone and coloring), brows and nail polish.  My likes are: eyeliner, blush, highlighter, lip color, eye shadow and tools.  My dislikes are lash products, bronzer and complexion products.  I don't want anything for my lashes because I have a billion mascaras to get through right now, bronzer I'm not interested in because I only ever use Nars Laguna and complexion products I'm not interested in since it's probably face masks and skin products. They even printed my Facebook profile photo on there! And they're calling me a knockout already, I may be in love. 

Sorme Get a Brow Gel in Fawn: $16.00 full size

I haven't heard of Sorme before, but this brow gel is tinted to my perfect shade.  I like my brows to match my hair color or to be slightly darker.  Wantable asks you about your personal coloration in the quiz as you sign up.  I've got brunette hair in the cooler months that highlights naturally like crazy in the sun so it will turn a dirty blonde in the warmer seasons.  Fawn is great for me all year round!  The gel will hold your brows in place as well as give them some overall color to make them a bit more robust or fill in gaps.  For a super clean look you can use a chisel brush to outline your brows once you've swiped the applicator through.

I used it to give myself some Brooke Shields brows.  I found the applicator to be terrible!  The brush is huge and fluffy picking up tons of product.  Swiping it through my brows without the brush trailing gel all over my forehead and eyelid was impossible.  The gel gives a strong hold.  You can feel a bit of stiffness on them when you're wearing it which I like, proves it's working.  I'll continue to use this product since I really liked it but I will be applying it with my own brushes instead of the wand. 

Starlooks Single Shadow Compact in Matte Sand: $12.00 full size

Matte Sand is a light nude that reminds me of Urban Decay's Naked Basics palette.  I love mattes since they're work friendly and go with everything!  I use this exact shade on almost all off my eye looks as a base along the underside of my brow and then add a highlighter color for layering.  I was running low so this is a great addition to my makeup stash.  

NCLA Nail Wraps in Reflect Yourself: $16.00 full size

I have never tried NCLA's nail wraps before.  I do have a few polish bottles of theirs though.  I have always admired the trendy nail designs they have on their wraps.  I was pretty pleased when I saw these and tried them on that night.

Reflect yourself is a close up of all things shimmery, studded and glossy.  The patterns look like macros of different shimmery materials with pink reflected in them.  This is the only nail wrap I have ever tried that has suggested a clear base and topper over the wraps which I love.  I always like to have my OPI Nail Envy under anything on my nails to protect them.  I also love how these wraps don't have to be sealed.  Many wraps have a polish base that dries if they are left unsealed making the left over wraps unusable.  NCLA seems to use a paper like base as opposed to polish which means any unused wraps can be saved and used for a second application later on or you can cut the wraps into cute designs and use them as nail art enhancements over polish.

Check out my bling!  Applying was easy.  With the added clear top coat I feel like they are really sticking strongly to the nail and the edges are protected from coming up and peeling like other nail wraps I have tried in the past.  Honestly, I think I will be buying more of these.  Often times people expect me to have fancy nail art on whenever they see me.  Quick application nail wraps take some of the pressure off if I don't have the time to spend hours doing my own nail art and still want to impress.

Mia Bellezza blush in Captive: $16.50 full size

This product was a surprise!  My receipt for this months box states that I should have received a Color Club nail polish in Personal Stylist.  Upon inspection, no polish was found and instead I came upon this blush pan.  Maybe they ran out of polish at the last second and threw this in for me or perhaps there was a packing mistake?  The Color Club was valued at $8 and this blush is valued at $16 so I'm not complaining!

The color is a flushed peach with a golden glimmer to it.  Captive is a really great shade for me.  It gives my cheeks some color without being too bright or glittery.

Michael Marcus Prime Foundation Brush: $20.00 full size

I love my Urban Decay Good Karma Optical Blurring Brush so I can't really see myself switching to this Michael Marcus brush for foundation.  However, I can see this as a perfect brush for patting concealer on under my eyes or touching up blemishes before I slap on the foundation.  Looking at the price I was a little surprised that this one brush is worth $20 but when I felt the bristles made of super fine Taklon I can start to see the price point.  

I've never been so well matched in a subscription service before!  Every color perfectly matches my hair or pale complexion.  It's such a relief not having to give half of the products away because they are too warm or vampy and dark for my skin tone.  My total value of this $40 box was over $80!  Even a better value if you have a subscription for $36 each month.  Every product was full size.

If you love my Wantable box as much as I did you can click here to take the Wantable quiz for makeup, accessories, intimates or even all three!  Remember, you can always skip or cancel at no penalty and if you don't like your box you can return it.  Wantable will never send you products on your dislike list and in my experience they have been absolutely fantastic at matching products to my particular likes and color scheme.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

January Ipsy Glam Bag 2014

New year, new Ipsy!  

This months Ipsy bag is an azule blue with a lighter blue overlay of different beauty product containers.  The bag smells very strongly of plastic which hasn't been an issue in previous bags. :/  This is the first month of Ipsy I've opened up and haven't been thrilled with whats inside.  I received Benefit's The Porefessional, Balm Me Up body balm, Malin + Goetz lip balm, Yaby foundation and Absolute! Cleansing Tissues.  

Absolute! - Make-Up Cleansing Tissues: $1.30 (10 wipes)

I guess it's alright to get make-up wipes in my bag but, I'm not all "Woohoo!  Make-up wipes!"  I'm sure I'll use them if I'm out and come home too tired to put the small effort into washing my face.....I'm super lazy...a lot.  I've never actually purchased make up wipes though.  I don't really see them as necessary when I've got some water in the tap and a bar of soap.  These wipes are touted as containing pomegranate extract but, I'm not exactly sure the positives of pomegranate extract and there is no explanation of it on the packaging anywhere.  I will give these wipes the +1 of having a super soft feel to them though!  It was like burying my face in a sheep or maybe a chinchilla.   This version is scented.  It like fruit juice from a foot away but once it reaches your nose it almost smells like how cherry cough syrup tastes.

Benefit - The Porefessional Pore Reducing Balm: $0 (sample size .1 fl. oz.)

Dear Ipsy, 

I am disappointed.  Part of my love for you has always been that you don't include theses little throw away samples that aren't really worth anything.  But, low and behold here is the dreaded itty-bitty sample.  There are maybe two or three uses in here solely meant to let you try it out to get you to buy a full size.  This size is not actually available for sale as it's only meant to be promotional so I'm assigning it a value of 0.  


Balanced Guru - Balm Me Up Organic Sweet Cocoa & Tangly Body Balm: $12.00 (travel size 1 oz.)

Yay!  Something I'm excited to try.  Winter is tough on a sickly, pale irish girl like me.  My skin gets easily wind burnt and turns all shades of crimson if even the smallest patch of me is exposed to the outdoor elements.  Unfortunately for me, I like to wear skirts to work and I thought walking through NYC would be fine since I'd only be outside for a couple blocks.  I was wrong.  Now I have this weird, gross patch of dry irritated skin right above my left ankle.  Because I care about you guys I'll spare you the images.  I'm afraid they may turn you to stone.  I've tried lotions, hydrating body sprays and baby saliva to get it to go away.  So far, no dice.  This stuff smells awesome like some kind of orangetini.  The texture is velvety smooth.  As soon as I opened it I started rubbing it into the desert on my leg.  I'm already starting to see the skin start to return to that of a human being and less of a gargoyle.  Huzzah!  Did I mention that I can practically pronounce everything on the ingredient label?  All certified organic as well.  The flower child in me is appeased with this as tribute.  

Yaby - Natural Finish Liquid Foundation in Buff (Oil Free): $1.70 (1 of 8 bottles 2.72 fl. oz.)

This liquid foundation is interesting.  Yaby sells eight of these tubes together in a set so that you may mix your own personal foundation color to get it as spot on as possible.  They even have blue, pink and green shades for cool, warm or olive skin tones.  The tip of the tube is removable to that you can put your mixed color into the tube for safe keeping and multiple uses.  If your into the whole mad chemist thing this could be fun.  Personally, I don't trust myself to mix cream into my coffe (thank you Starbucks baristas) let alone my own foundation shade. 

Malin + Goetz - Mojito Lip Balm: $12 (full size)

Doctor, hand me the scalpel...anesthesia injection...Mojito Lip Blam....maybe not in that order.  The packaging of this Malin + Goetz lippy is very surgical and ridged in appearance. At first I was like, Ipsy did you give me some prescription face cream or something?  Come on my skin isn't that bad.  Upon further inspection it's an innocent enough and fun lip treatment.  

There isn't an applicator tip so you'll have to squeeze this onto your finger and apply that way.  The formula itself is crystal clear and has a delightful lime and mint scent.  

One word, hydration!  This stuff applies super sticky and fully coats.  My lips are not getting chapped with this stuff on, no way no how.  After a half hour to an hour the stickiness will dissipate as it soaks into the skin.  I still feel it once it's soaked in and my lips feel super smooth.  This lip treatment has fatty acid hydration technology.  I barely passed high school chemistry so don't hold me to this but, I'm assuming the fatty acids contained in the lip balm keeps your lips smooth and soft.  If you're worried about weigh gain try not to get any in your mouth...just kidding. ;)  

Over all I received a $27 value in my bag this month which is still great considering it's only $10 a month.  Typically my bags are worth more.  I'm not super pleased with how Ipsy is kicking off the new year.  Please, please, please, pleaseeee don't include any more throw away samples Ipsy.  I also didn't get any color in this bag whatsoever.  Part of the reason I've cancelled other subscriptions is because of throw away samples and lack of beauty products with color like lip products, blushes and eyeshadows.  

I loved the Malin + Goetz Mojito Lip Blam and Balanced Guru body balm.  The Yaby foundation and Absolute! make-up wipes were alright.  The Porefessional balm is not what I'm looking for in a subscription bag.  I'll probably use it but it will only last a few uses.  Since Ipsy is my favorite makeup subscription I'll wait out my next few bags to see how they do.  I'm pretty confident Ipsy will return to their former glory.  

If you'd like to get your own Ipsy subscription for $10 a month click here to take the Ipsy beauty quiz.  Each month Ipsy will match you with products tailored to your tastes.  I've had a pretty good track record with them before so I'm keeping my subscription.  I'm jonesing for some more Urban Decay which they've included in multiple different bags before!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Revlon Parfumerie

I'm so thrilled to be reviewing Revlon's new collection!  This was sent to me for review.

Revlon's new collection is called Parfumerie.  Each shade of polish is unique in it's shade and scent.  Once dry, these shades have complex notes of fruits and florals, sweets and spices or fresh smells.  Some of the polish shades have names such as Pink Pineapple, Lavender Soap, Fresh Linen and Autumn Spice.  Just the names put my nose on the fritz!

I was sent African Tea Rose, China Flower, Italian Leather, Chocolate Truffle, Espresso and Spun Sugar.  Many of these shades are perfect for winter natural and neutral shades.

African Tea Rose is a Barbie pink with the slightest hint of pink shimmer.  It's even hard to see in this photo.  I used two coats for full coverage. This pretty pink has a very light floral scent once dried.  I had a few questions on Instagram (@DullLikeGlitter) asking if the smell also has polish scent to it.  I didn't notice any chemical smells, only the fragrance.  This one is clearly and definitely rose but, like most of these polishes it's quite complex and there are definitely other scents in there as well.  I'm not much of a pink girl for of course I had to add some brooding black vines as my design.  They were hand painted and each are unique.  I love doing nail art like this because it's never the same twice.

China Flower is a bright coral red that was absolutely flawless in application, formula and color.  This polish, like African Tea Rose, has a floral scent that is quite strong.  I painted my nails, they dried and I went for the first sniff and immediately said, "Wow!"....even though there was no one else in the room.  I added some deep blue tribal to the accent nail for a fun pop.

Italian Leather is a beautiful mossy green with lots of golden microglitter.  This shade has a beautiful formula and the color is very dramatic.  The golden glitter shines in light and can mute in shade brightening and darkening the green overall.  The scent to this one is much more musky and seductive than the florals.  I was relieved that it wasn't a new car or overwhelmingly leathery smell. I can't stand new car smell.  With the musky deep scent, I actually found that I really liked it.

Chocolate Truffle is a deep brown creme.  While many of the scents of other shades don't smell precisely like their names this one clearly does.  It smells almost like hot chocolate.  For this shade I decided to try my first ever plaid design.  I like it!  I'll have to experiment with plaid again.

The darkest of the six, Espresso, is a deep black.  This shade was a little thinner than the others needing three coats.  Espresso has a deep natural scent almost like mahogany wood.  For my design I added some chevron stripes of Revlon's Spun Sugar.

Spun Sugar is a metallic silver.  When I first received the bottle it almost looks a bit champagne.  I used two coats for full application.  This polish scent smells like sweet evergreens!  It's very festive and fun.  The finish to this polish was a bit streaky.

Overall, this collection is really fun.  The scents are very complex and will knock any scented polish you've tried before out of the water.  Revlon was amazing enough to give me a second set of these six polishes to give away on my Instagram!  To enter follow me on Instagram @DullLikeGlitter or check out the hastag #revlonwinner for details.  The giveaway ends on 1/13 so you still have a few more days to enter!