4.15.2014

Let's Talk: Negative Reviews

Negative reviews are kind of a touchy subject. Bloggers often get criticized for only posting positive reviews or talking about products they enjoy, despite many readers expressing interest in hearing about the less than impressive products as well.

For me, I certainly prefer writing positive reviews, simply because it's much more fun spreading the love than sharing disappointment; however, as an avid blog reader, I also understand the need for negative reviews, as they can often help guide one's purchases. 

The way I decide whether or not I'm going to crunch out a negative review or mention in a post is to consider whether or not there's a lot of hype surrounding the product. If there is, I will likely talk about it because, chances are, people are interested in reading about it, one way or another. If it's a product that is lesser known or flying under the radar anyway, I'll usually just let it go, as I figure there's probably a reason not many people are talking about it.

I'm curious what your thoughts are on negative reviews. Do you like to write them? Read them?


4.14.2014

The Monday Post #10

Monday is by far the gloomiest day of the week for me, followed by Sunday simply because it precedes Monday. Hopefully, The Monday Post will give you some beauty inspiration and help you get through the week! 


Favorite beauty read/viewing: I dare you not to lust after these two new Dior powders after reading this post on Mostly Sunny. So. much. gorgeousness.

Beauty goal: Fact: I'm not a hair person. I mean, I like for my hair to look good, but I'm so lazy when it comes to maintenance beyond just simple washing that most often, I let it air dry using no product at all and call it a day. As a result, it should come as no surprise that my hair often looks flat, lifeless and limp. My goal will be to do something to it just once a week, whether it be curling, blow drying for volume, or using product for texture. For crying out lout, anything would be better than what I'm doing now (or rather, not doing). Let the Tiffany vs. laziness battle begin.

Product Rediscovery: Before Diorskin Nude BB Creme and Hourglass Immaculate Foundation, there was MUFE Face & Body Foundation. It was a favorite of mine for a long time, and I've been loving it again on good skin days. I use concealer to cover up any problem areas as needed, but the sheerer coverage of the foundation means that the rest of my skin can still show through. This foundation is the epitome of a natural finish.

Beauty lust: So, I don't have anything from Tom Ford, and for the most part, I'm okay with that; however, there is one TF product that my collection needs, and I will quite literally throw a hissy fit if it doesn't find its way to me soon, and that product is the Cocoa Mirage Eyeshadow Quad. I've yet to hear someone utter a negative thought on this palette. Do you have it? If so, do I need it?

Most looking forward to: Job hunting. No, seriously. It makes me nervous but excited at the same time. I can't wait to finally be done with schooling and move on with the rest of my life!


Hope you all have a great week!

4.13.2014

Dupes or not?

Sometimes when I swatch something and notice how similar it seems to another product in my collection, I make a mental note to compare the two later on. All too often, however, I realize months later that the idea completely escaped me at some point and I never got around to doing it. Here are three comparisons that are long overdue...

Comparison 1
Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro in 401
MAC Lipstick in Lady Danger

Comparison 2
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Dim Infusion
Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso

Comparison 3
NYX Xtreme Lip Cream in Strawberry Jam
BITE Beauty Cashmere Lip Cream in Sancerre

L to R:
Armani 401
MAC Lady Danger
Hourglass Dim Infusion
Milani Luminoso
NYX Strawberry Jam
BITE Beauty Sancerre

:: 1 :: Armani 401 and Lady Danger are nearly identical, with the only difference being that 401 is slightly more orange. Lady Danger is matte, and 401 is a velvet finish that is nearly matte once dry. I prefer the Armani as I find the formula infinitely more comfortable to wear compared to MAC's matte lipstick formula.

:: 2 :: Shade-wise, Dim Infusion and Luminoso are very similar. The latter has a base that is just a pinch darker and pinker; however, the most obvious difference between the two is Dim Infusion's satin finish versus Luminoso's shimmery one.

:: 3 :: Finish-wise, Strawberry Jam and Sancerre are very similar, both drying down to velvet, nearly matte finishes. Strawberry Jam is pinker, while Sancerre has more red, although the difference is less apparent on the lips. In terms of formula, I much prefer BITE's offering, as the color is more long-wearing and much more comfortable on the lips.

I know the mere usage of the term 'dupe' often gets some people worked up, so I'd rather not deem these as being as such or not. Hopefully, these comparisons will allow you to decide for yourself :)


4.08.2014

Surprise! theBalm Cindy-Lou Manizer Giveaway

Remember my review of theBalm Cindy-Lou Manizer a little while ago? Does peachy-pink with an unexpected lavender shift ring a bell? If not, you can read my review here :) Luckily for one of my readers, I bought an extra to give away!

Good luck! :)

4.06.2014

A cream blush formula that will appeal to the masses

I'm typically not a fan of cream to powder formulas, but Make Up For Ever HD Blush is an exception. Their newest blush formula 'combines the second-skin look of a cream with the ease of a powder,' and there's not a single fault I can find with it. Available in 16 shades, I went for the one shade I felt would be unique to my collection.
Make Up For Ever HD Blush in 335 Fawn is a tawny pinky-brown. I'm a big fan of the 'goes with everything' blushes, and this shade offers an incredibly natural flush that suits any look, and the brown base helps to create a soft contoured look as well.

Swatched below in different lighting situations
In terms of finish, HD Blush boasts 'no visible texture,' and I agree wholeheartedly with its claim. Even upon close inspection of the skin, you see only the color and never the actual product sitting atop the surface, if that makes sense. It has neither a dewy finish, nor a true matte one; a skin-like finish is the best way I can describe it.

Although the formula is technically a cream-to-powder, it's unlike other formulas I've tried in the past in that it continues to blend smoothly like a cream until you let up, never blending away into that horrible dry, powdery texture towards the end. (I apply mine with the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush, by the way.) It lasts all day on me and blends just as flawlessly over a liquid base as it does over a powdered one. 

Wearing HD Blush in 335 Fawn
The only people I can think of that may not appreciate the HD Blush formula are those who favor cream blushes with a dewy finish, and even then, these might surprise you. Everyone else - you need at least one.

Thanks for the recommendation, Tracy! :)

Make Up For Ever HD Blush is available from Sephora for $26.


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