Saturday, April 30, 2011

Whooom! Boooom!!! Eyeshadow and Nail Polish Review

To be honest, in the past the only thing that appealed to me about Essence Cosmetics were their mini bottles of $0.99 nail polish. I had seen the large assortment of cosmetics but with my past history of using inexpensive cosmetics, I was wary. That is until I saw this mono eyeshadow:

These products are from the Essence trend edition Whooom! Boooom!!!  The artwork on this totally sucked me in. It reminded me of a Lichtenstein, and me being a huge fan of 60's pop art, I had to have this. So I bought all four of their mono eyeshadows.

(From Left to Right: (1)Chacalaca, (2)Cream Canvas, (3)Muse Marylin, (4)You've Got the Art)

Now my pictures don't do these colors justice at all. They are all bright and highly saturated in color (with the exception of Cream Canvas but it's a GREAT neutral). I did experience some fall out with these shadows but no more than higher end shadows.

(1) Chacalaca

First up, Chacalaca. I LOVE this name! I grew up in an area that is native to the Chacalaca bird. And growing up, I thought it was a made up name that my goofy parents made up.  Now the eyeshadow is a beautiful navy blue with silver, aqua and lavendar shimmer bits(?). The shimmer really doesn't show up once applied on any of these shades (think of Physicians Formula Powders in their Happy Boosters line). The only time I saw an amp of shimmer is when I swatched these colors using a wet brush (look for swatches at the end of post). I used them wearing an eyeshadow primer so I can't say whether or not they crease.

(2) Cream Canvas

Cream Canvas, this is my favorite of the four for my own selfish reasons. For some reason it's coming up a little more pink/peach here than it actually is. It's closer to the color in the pic where you see all four shades. And it is the exact same shade of my face! I loved it so much that I used it as powder. And it worked like a dream. I think I might even go back to the store as soon as I finish posting this. It did a stellar job at covering any freckles and broken capillaries on my face.

(3)Muse Marilyn
Muse Marilyn, this is a soft violet purple, almost a mauve. The color pay off is vibrant yet soft at the same time. If you want to venture into bolder colors, but are afraid of saturation, this would be a good shade to start out with.

(4)You've Got the Art
You've Got the Art - again, the lighting here is making it look way different. This is a great chartreuse (green/yellow) shade. If you've seen/have Sally Hansen nail polish in Chartreuse Chase, it's the exact same color.  I don't often see this color as a single. Normally when I see this type of color it is offered in a duo or quad. I was really excited to see what this color would look like on my lids, but sadly it came out more yellow than green (a really pretty shade of yellow).

This is the look that I came up with using ONLY those four shades (and mascara). Even the liner! The liner is Chacalaca using a wet liner brush. As you can see, Cream Canvas is invisible on my skin. I almost didn't post this pic because I BADLY need to pluck my eyebrows. I'm so embarrassed.

Dry Swatch

Wet Swatch

You can see from the wet and dry swatch that the shimmer in the shades is much more apparent when wet. I actually preferred these shadows wet. They had much more shimmer and depth to them. They seemed to come alive.

Chacalaca Nail Polish
Now for the one polish I picked up in, of course, Chacalaca. This was the only color that really drew me in. The others seemed to be dupes of stuff I already owned. When I brought it home I thought for a second that it might be the exact same color as their Just Rock It nail color, but upon closer inspection, Chacalaca is much more blue violet while Just Rock It leans more navy.  I also love this color because it is the same color as my bedroom walls. This is a very opaque finish. I only used two coats. But the formula was kinda wonky. While the formula was neither think nor runny, the polish on my thumb and middle finger bubbled like crazy. I don't know, maybe I got a bad bottle. I will keep it around for awhile though and see if it improves.

All in all, I really liked the eyeshadows. I would defiantly recommend checking them out.  And I am really thinking about going back to purchase the cream liners in the same shades and checking out the rest of the Essence line.  Though I'll probably skip on another bottle of polish.

Have you tried these products yet? What did you think of them?

Disclaimer: I did not receive any monetary value for this review.  I purchased these products with my own money. All thoughts and opinions are soley my own.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Hidden Treasure Dupe Fail leads to New Discovery

The week has quickly gotten away from me. I'm sorry for my short absence. I actually had some freelancing jobs and my boyfriends birthday. AND I'm still trying to potty train my chihuahua/mini pincher mix puppy (I don't think I've mentioned him yet. I'll do a separate post on my baby).   I've had a loooooong week.  So here is my mini post for today:

I love all types of beauty blogs, especially ones that obsess over nail polish. But be forewarned; Once you start reading them, you will soon find yourself driving all over town to see if you can find the last bottle of a limited edition polish (ie: Clarins 230, Gosh Holographic, China Glaze Kaleidoscope Him Out - I have a great dupe for this one). One such sought after varnish is:

Sally Hansen - Hidden Treasure
Oooooooh....look at that oil spill. I had this on for a week with no top coat (notice the tip wear on the thumb) and I got compliments on it everyday. I encourage you to click on it to see it enlarged (HA! That's what She said) and magnify the awesomeness. It changes color depending on the type of light and when it turns all orange/gold, it seems to almost emit a glow.  This is one coat of Hidden Treasure over an NYC black  with no top coat on (And this picture was taken in the shade!). I didn't add a top coat since I had originally planned to photograph this on day one of the manicure. That never manifested.

But I did search high a low for a budget friendly dupe for Hidden Treasure (I believe Nubar and Nfu-Oh both have dupes but they are both over $10 bucks a pop).  And this is what I found:

NYX Blue Ave & NYX Peach Ave (average $5)

Sadly, I think I'm going to have to file this under FAIL. I really don't want to. But while it looks nothing like Hidden Treasure, I think is is lovely all on it's own and might be my new fave go to mani. Peach Ave has gold flakies with some that turn green, while Blue Ave has blue, green and lavender flakies. So when you layer the two over black you get this beautiful black rainbow effect. I LOVE it.

I did read some reviews on these and I got some mixed reviews. The biggest complaint was that the flakies were too chunky, would stick up through the polish and not lay flat.  I didn't have this issue. I did however add some Seche Vite but that's because I wanted to prolong the look. 

Either way, the quest for a budget friendly Hidden Treasure dupe continues. What do you think of NYX ave polishes?  

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Rock & Republic Sale at HauteLook

Today and tomorrow only Rock & Republic is on sale at

Eyeshadows - $8.40 (original $28.00)
Pressed Powder - $13.20 (original $44.00)
Illuminizers - $14.40 (original $48.00)
Lip Gloss - $7.50 (original $26.00)
Highlighters - $67.50 (original $225.00)
and an assortment of brushes up to 80% off.

This is truly a great deal. Rock & Republic is a great high end line with beautiful packaging. They also have their own groundbreaking foundation, Rock the Cure, in which 100% of their profits go to charity. This year their profits go to City of Hope whose mission is the research, education and treatment of life threatening diseases. That makes me feel just a little better about adding an additional eyeshadow to my cart.

Disclaimer: The aforementioned post are thoughts and an opinions of my own. I did not receive any monetary compensation for this post.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Chanel Dupes by Revlon

I have a love/hate relationship with Revlon cosmetics. It's always a hit-n-miss situation with me and their nail polishes. The formula is either goopy or bubbly and then turn around and be the most perfect nail polish ever. The one thing they are really consistent with is their massive collection of colors and are always on trend with higher end collections.

Chanel Le Vernis Black Pearl VS. Revlon Black With Envy:

Black Pearl is from the Spring 2011 collection. Which one is Chanel? Which one is Revlon? Hint: Chanel leans slightly green (slight green duochrome?) and Black with Envy is more more gray. Answers at the end of this post.

Chanel Le Vernis Mimosa VS. Revlon Electric:

Mimosa is from their Summer 2011 collection.  Can you tell the difference? Both are beautiful sunshine, lemony yellows with very fine gold micro glitter.

Answers (from left to right):
Black Pearl Vs. Black with Envy - Black with Envy on left, Black Pearl on right
Mimosa Vs. Electric- Mimosa on first finger and ring finger, Electric on second finger and pinky.

So if you love Chanel nail polish but not the $25.00 Chanel price, then check out these Revlon options (average $6). Even with Revlon's inconsistent formulas, at a saving of about $19 a pop, I'll continue to lacquer my nails with these lovelies.

Impulse Buy

Sometimes I can't help myself. While at Target on Friday, stocking up on last minute Easter basket stuffers I ran into this little cutie:

I'm sure you've all seen it before. I know I run into every time I'm cosmetic hunting and I always talk myself out of it. But at $1.99, I thought it would end up in my little cousin's Easter basket. WRONG! It was mine before I even reached the car.

I mean it comes with an Hello Kitty Necklace, nail decals and pretty hot pink nail polish. How could I not keep it for myself. The nail polish alone is a great hot pink with a subtle blue/purple shimmer. The only thing that got me was the teeny tiny itty bitty top and brush. But this is targeted for little ones so, it's forgiven.

It even inspired me to do my very first nail art:

Ok, so don't make fun. I know my Hello Kitty's look more like Hello Ducks with whiskers. But whatevs, I tried.

This is what I TRIED to do:
 I think my nails need to be a bit longer among other things. Anywhoo...Hope everyone had a great weekend. On to a new week.

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Another eye spy edition. This time an Essence trend edition that they call whoom! boooom!!! I spotted this at my local H.E.B supermarket (Texas girls know what I'm talking about) on an end cap. I was happy to see that it hadn't really been rifled through too much.

I bought all four eyeshadow shades and a nail polish color that really caught my eye. I'm thinking about going back and picking up the cream eyeliner. Either way, stay tuned for a review!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Get the NAKED look for less!

So here goes my first review (yay!). I recently bought this NYX Nude on Nude Palette during the 40% off NYX sale at Ulta last week. This has been considered a more economical alternative to Urban Decay's NAKED palette.  The NAKED palette comes with 12 of their award winning eyeshadows including 5 new shades. The palette also comes with a Good Karma Eyeshadow brush and a travel size of their Eyeshadow Primer Potion. BUT it also comes with a $48 dollar price tag. It still is a good deal if you break it down. Which means you are in essence paying $4 bucks per shade (original price per eyeshadow single is $17 bucks!). Now I don't know about you, but $48 dollars is a lot to pay for eyeshadow when I can use that to fill up my gas tank.

The NYX Nude on Nude palette on the other hand comes with 20 eyeshadows and 10 lip colors and is valued at $25!! Which comes out to $0.83 per eyeshadow or lip color. Saving you $23 bucks. PLUS NYX retaliers are more likely to have promotions where you can save even more. I purchased mine for a little under $12 bucks!

Now the price sounds great, but how about the quality??

The shadows come with 12 shimmer and 8 matte finishes. They are very smooth, and pigmented. There is a little fall out but it's very minimal. WARNING: They DO crease. But just use a little primer on your lids and that eliminates the problem and they will last ALL DAY LONG.

This particular shade reminded me alot of Galapagos by Nars. Not at all a dupe, but very similar. (excuse my nails, it's for another posting soon to come!)

Here is an eye look I did with Nude on Nude:

Without Flash

With Flash (Sorry didn't realize my hair was in my face)

I was VERY surprised at the lip colors. I was expecting something cheap and waxy and gross. Not at all the case with these. They range from Nudes,  to Pinks to RED. The red lip color was by far my favorite and is now my go-to red lip color. They are very moisturizing and easy to blend with each other to customize color options. The lips colors were my rockstars of this palette.

Now if $25 dollars is still too steep for your wallet and you still want the NAKED look, I have one more option for you.

The Maybelline Expertwear Eyeshadow Quad in Chai Latte.  This comes with four shades, One metallic, two shimmers and one matte. There is no creasing, its long wearing (with primer) and very versital. Here's one of my favorite tutorials on a look using this quad. And at 5 bucks  how can you loose. (Remember to look out for Maybelline promos!)

Prices and availability may vary depending on location. Please check your local area for more specific details.

Disclaimer: These products were purchased with my own money and I did not receive any monetary compensation. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

ZOYA's Earth Day promotion!

Let me first start off by saying that Zoya is a really great nail polish. They are free from formaldehyde, toluene, camphor and dibutyl phthalate (DBP) and have over 300 "healthy" nail polishes to choose from. I personally have a hard time finding them in stores near where I live. Occasionally I will find a single Zoya straggler in the clearance section of Ulta but that's really about it. And I really don't like purchasing nail polishes over the Internet unless I've seen the colors in person (and/or are hard to find in stores). BUT Zoya website always has great promotions going on. I particularly LOVE this Earth Day Nail Polish Exchange promotion. I feel like I'm doing good while indulging in my obsession.

Starting today (for this week only) Apr 20-27, using code EARTHZOYA, you can select a minimum of 6 nail polishes (max 24) for half off the regular price ($8). Let's say you chose 6 (already a savings of $24!), THEN you would send Zoya 6 bottles of unwanted nail polish that you have.

For more info, click here

Monday, April 18, 2011

Lancome GWP at Dillards starts today!

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I spent the weekend trying to organize my ever growing collection of nail polishes. I still haven't been able to figure out a way to accomodate a growing collection. Any suggestions?

I woke up this cloudy Monday morning to find that Dillards is now having their Gift with Purchase with Lancome right now. Email said until supplies last which usually is about two weeks give or take. I love GWP. I feel like you get a whole lot of makeup for a really good price. And most of the time I don't even use up the sample size of makeup. I have an mini eyeshadow from Clinique that I've had for years from a GWP (and I LOVE it).

Back to Lancome at Dillards. This GWP is with any $32.50 purchase. You gift consists of 6 Lancome favorites and a clutch in either baby blue, light green, or violet purple.

I'm not sure what to get. I do love their Color Sensation Lipsticks and I do want one in Stylista. But those lipsticks come out to $22. I'd have to find something for around $10.50 that I would use everyday.

Anyway here's a special treat to hopefully make you smile and brighten your week. Don't you just NEED this!

AH!!!!! I want this I want this I want this! I still haven't been able to figure out price or where I can get my hands on one!!! If you know, INFORM ME PLEASE!

Have a great week!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Save 15% at Sephora for this week!

I just got an email from Sephora announcing from April 15-21 Beauty Insiders can receive 15% off their purchases in-store or online (code: CHIC). It says its only for Beauty Insiders, but I'm sure you can try out their online code anyway.

What are you going to get?

How to get NYX Nude on Nude Palette for $11.49!!

I know this is late but today and tomorrow at Ulta (as previously mentioned in my last post), NYX, Revlon, Maybelline and Almay Cosmetics are 40% off. I went on Tuesday to see what goodies I could stock up on and low and behold I saw the Nude on Nude Palette. I had completely forgotten it was now available at Ulta.

Now they are originally priced at $24.99 but with the 40% discount it comes out to $14.99. BUT with their $3.50 off a purchase over $10.00 coupon, you get your Nude on Nude palette for $11.49!!! Quite a steal if you ask me. And you will be able to marvel at all of these lovely eyeshadows and lip colors.

Sorry for the bad photo. I lost my camera and had to use my phone (ugh!).

The Nude on Nude palette has been called a more economical version of Urban Decay's Naked Palette. I will be reviewing the Nude on Nude palette soon. So stay tuned for that.

Another awesome treasure I found was CND (Creative Nail Design) Spamanicure Almond Hydrating Lotion for the hands. This lotion is sooooooo yummy smelling. *Ohm nom nom nom* It smells a lot like their Solar Oil (which I'm uber obsessed with).  And really does leave your hands moisturized without leaving them feeling greasy.

Again sorry for the photo.

Anyway this baby's original price is listed at $13.99 (I've seen it listed up to $23 bucks) and I got it for a whopping $2.99!! I'm really thinking about going back and buying a couple more. This now has a permanent place on my desk. It's that good.

Well those are my two major deals that I found. What were you able to get?

PS: CND almond hydrating lotion is only available in stores and not online :-( And the Nude on Nude palette says its only available online but I was able to purchase it in store.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Orly Pin-Up Collection

Look at what I spied with my little cosmetic obsessed eye at Ulta yesterday:

The new Orly Pin-Up Collection!
(From Right to Left): Va Va Voom, Here Comes Trouble, Coquette Cute, Bubbly Bombshell.

I don't even feel comfortable calling it a collection since there are only four colors. Maybe "Selection" would be a more appropriate word. 

I absolutely love Orly as a brand. The formula, the volume of polish for the price, and that awesome handy dandy rubberized brush holder. That being said, these colors look very lovely and complimentary when grouped like this. BUT I feel like both Va Va Voom (hot neon pink) and Coquette Cute (neon coral) are not very new as far as colors go. I feel like you can find dupes of these colors in other collections. But if you have nothing in your collection like these colors, get them! They are so great for summer.

I WILL be purchasing Here Comes Trouble (green glitter) and Bubbly Bombshell (magenta/violet glitter). I have a new found respect for glitter now that I find myself on the cusp of 30 (EEK!) and I fell in love with Bubbly Bombshell. Its such a beautiful color of magenta/violet.

I wish I could show you some swatches but sadly I didn't purchase any. They were not on sale and as you might have guessed, I will not purchase anything at regular price.

Has anyone else purchased the colors? How do you like them? Let me know.

PS: Sorry about the tiny pic. I couldn't seem to enlarge it.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Maybelline, Revlon, NYX, and Almay SALE!

Now this is a deal worth posting. Right now at Ulta, Maybelline, Revlon,  NYX, and Almay are 40% off!!! And if you sign up for their emails, then you'll get a coupon for $3.50 off of your purchase of $10 bucks! SCORE!  I definately need a new NYX pallate and Revlon's nail polish in Royal has been on my wishlist for quite some time. I might even stock up on NYX pigments. Sale ends on April 16. What will you get?