MAC Shiny Pretty Things Face Compact

Hello everyone!! A few weeks back I received a nice little coupon from Ulta in the mail and so I decided to do some makeup shopping although I don’t really need anything πŸ˜› Most of the holiday releases this year from the big brands were kind of meh to me. This face palette from the MAC 2018 holiday collection caught my eye since I have never tried their extra dimension formula. The palette also had some good reviews on Ulta so I decided to pick this guy up.

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Mac Shiny Pretty Things Face Compact

The face palette comes in 2 shades: Fair and Medium Deep. I was kind of torn on which one to get. The highlighter in the Fair compact looked lovely but I heard that the bronzer does not pick up well with a brush. The bronzer in the Medium deep looked scary but I eventually bought the medium deep because the blush in this one is totally my jam! The fair compact comes in a silver compact and the medium deep comes in a pink compact. Frankly, I hate the packaging! The cloth like material makes it look tacky especially in combination with the hot pink :\

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MAC Shiny Pretty Things Face Compact in Medium Deep

The inside of the palette looks much better! The highlighter looks very golden in the pan but I was able to make it work on my medium skintone without it looking like gold stripes on the top of my cheek bones πŸ˜€ However, this is my least favorite item in this palette. When I apply this on my skin I do detect tiny glitter particles. This is not a very smooth formula compared to the blush and bronzer. You can see what I am talking about in my brush swatches coming up below.

Next up, the blush! This was what drew me in..I love peachy pinky blushes and this fits the bill. It look lovely on the skin. The formula is amazing! It becomes one with your skin and gives your cheeks a natural looking radiant glow.

The bronzer looks scary dark in the pan and I was quite intimidated by it! However, I found that when applied lightly it works very well for my skintone. It is quite pigmented but I still don’t think it is dark enough for very deep skintones. The bronzer reminds me of chocolate whenever I look at it.. πŸ˜‰

All 3 products require a stiff brush to pick up the powders. There is minimal powder kickup if any actually!

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Brush swatches of the highlighter (Soul Glow), Blush (Carolers) and the Bronzer in medium deep

As you can see from the brush swatches of the 3 pans, the highlighter swatch doesn’t look as smooth as the blush and bronzer. However, it is still a workable product and if you like the blush and bronzer, I think it is worth buying especially at the current sale price πŸ™‚

Did you pick up anything from the Shiny Pretty Things collection from MAC ?

Until next time, ciao!!

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Clio Art Highlighter in Pearl White

I love pretty packaging. That sure can be a problem sometimes especially when shopping for makeup! I fell for this highlighter from Clio because of how beautiful the compact looks. Adding more pretty things to your makeup drawer is okay right..especially if it is a highlighter πŸ˜‰

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Clio Art Highlighter

The compact is plastic but looks and feels sturdy. The art work is printed on it and also on the outer box. I didn’t have the heart to throw away the outer box since the print looks like a water color painting.

There are 3 shades of this highlighter available. 01 pearl white is the one I picked up. The other 2 shades are gold toned and rosy toned. Having a medium color skin tone, I kind of shy away from white based highlighter since they can look frosty on my skin coloring. I decided to take a chance with this one and am happy I did!

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Clio Art highlighter in 01 Pearl White

As you can see it is a baked product and gives a lovely sheen to the skin. It is not a chunky highlighter nor is it the very intense type of highlighter people seem to like these days. This is a soft and subtle highlighter like the Bobbie brown shimmer bricks can be. It looks lovely when buffed into the skin.

The compact comes with a nice mirror and also a brush which feels really nice. I have not used the brush but I am sure it will work fine in a pinch.

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Swatch of 01 Pearl White

As you can see, this highlighter lets your skin peak thru a bit when it is buffed into the skin ( I swatched the highlighter with a brush) and that makes it look a bit more natural. I love the glow it imparts and it stays put all day too.

Overall, I am extremely happy to own this highlighter. I might just go ahead and pick up the other shades too some time soon πŸ˜€

Until next time, ciao!!!

 

Transitioning into fall: What I’m loving at the moment!

Hello folks!

It is getting chilly these days..sunny days are precious! Baby boy is not loving the cold chilly breeze in Boston city, neither is his mama πŸ™‚ Recently, I realized I have been grabbing the same products quite often and decided to share them here with all of you.

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Current favorites!

Burberry Fresh Glow BB Cream: I have a love hate relationship with this one! it is greasy in the summer but in the colder months it is perfect for my skin. It has almost no coverage, but it does give a little pep talk to your skin before you apply anything more. I find it comfortable and it does not cling to any dry patches.

Bourjois Rouge Velvet Lipstick in Brique-a-brac: I love the color! It is probably more of a summer color but I love this pinky brown shade and personally find it appropriate to wear all year round πŸ™‚ The formula isn’t the best but with a lipbalm it is works well!

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Bobbie Brown Shimmer brick in Bronze:Β Again more of a summer time choice but I love using the first 2 strips mixed together as a highlighter. It is subtle yet strong and gives the most elegant highlight on your cheek bones. I do use the darker shades as eyeshadows once in a while. Overall, I love the shimmer bricks! They are versatile and last forever!!

Japonesque Velvet Touch Blush in 04:Β The texture of these blushes is great. The shade 04 is matte and blends beautifully into your skin. I find this shade quite unique and it is perfect for fall. It is a cool toned violet pink which is something I shy away from usually. This color doesn’t look weird on my yellow under tone skin so yay for that πŸ™‚

What have you been loving recently?

Until next time…ciao!

 

Benefit Cosmetics Get the Pretty Started Palette

Hello folks!

I have a small confession to make..despite being a makeup junkie, I have till date tried nothing from Benefit Cosmetics. What! How come you may ask? Well the main attraction for me has always been the box powders from the brand. I just could never decide which ones to get. All their holiday kits which have an array of their box powders get mixed reviews every year, plus they come in bulky packaging. However, this past holiday season I spotted the Get the Pretty Started palette which had the sleekest packaging I have seen from Benefit till date πŸ™‚

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Get the Pretty Started Palette

Its so pretty to look at! This compact travel friendly palette comes with 2 of their hit powder products ; Hoola Bronzer and Galifornia Blush. The highlighter included in this face palette is the Watts Up highlighter which is a cream product. I am not a fan of palettes that contain cream and powder products together, but in this case I was willing to over look that detail because the price tag was 20$ πŸ™‚ The pan sizes are generous and overall its an awesome way to sample some of their products without breaking the bank.

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Hoola Bronzer, Galifornia Blush and Watts Up Highlighter

The texture of both Hoola and Galifornia can be best described as being buttery soft. They do kick up powder if you go on a stabbing spree with your brush so I like to gently tap my brush in the pans. Both, Hoola and Galifornia blend really well on the skin. I like the undertone of Hoola ..not too red not too ashy..I now understand why it is so popular πŸ™‚ Galifornia is a pretty blush but I don’t find it unique enough to spend 28$ on the full size. I found it quite similar to some of the other blushes I own. Both the powders are scented and I was surprised that I actually like the scent πŸ˜€ I usually hate scented makeup products.

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Brush Swatches

Above are heavy brush swatches of the 3 products in the palette. I really like the cream highlighter. I usually shy away from cream products since I find them a bit bothersome to use but the Watts Up highighter is so gorgeous I feel like taking the extra effort πŸ˜€ It is the perfect highlighter for no makeup makeup days.

Overall, I think this palette is a steal for 20$. I do reach for this palette quite often ever since I got my hands on it. I see it still listed on Sephora, so do grab this palette if you’ve always wanted to try some of the powders from Benefit. The cream highlighter is a lovely bonus. It would be nice to see benefit come out with more sleek palettes like this!

Are you a fan of Benefit Cosmetics? What else do you recommend from the brand?

Until next time, ciao!!

The Balm Cindy Lou Manizer

Hello everyone!!

As we are continuously being bombarded with new highlighter releases by companies almost on a daily basis, I thought I’d review an oldie but an awesome highlighter that has been in my makeup routine for atleast 2 years now! I’m talking about the Cindy Lou Manizer from the Balm, the peachy sister of the famous Mary Lou Manizer.

The Cindy Lou Manizer

First off, the packaging is cute as with most of the Balm’s packaging. The highlighter is housed in a nice sleek compact which has a big mirror too. The compact is the size of my palm and you get 8.5g of product! That is enough to last you forever in my opinion!

Cindy Lou Manizer looks dark peach in the pan

The Cindy Lou Manizer can be used as a blush topper, highlighter and even eyeshadow. I have primarily used it as a highlight and blush topper. If you already own the Mary Lou Manizer, you might find this to be more of a subtle and natural highlight with a light hand. I have yellow undertones and a medium skintone and I still find that this works well as a subtle daytime highlighter. It gives a lit from within glow especially when out in daylight.

I tend to use the tinniest amount when using this as a highlight and when using it as a blush topper I like to layer it a bit more so that the peachy tone comes through. Again, this is not a glittery highlight, it gives a lovely sheen and hence looks natural on the skin.

Swatch of the Cindy Lou Manizer

This is a very finely milled powder and very soft! You have to be careful when dipping your brush into the pan…if you try swirl your brush or stab the pan there will be a lot of powder kickup. The best way to pick up product is to gently tap your brush on the pan and voila you have picked up enough product!

Overall, I love the quality of this highlighter. I do not notice any fading throughout the day (I have dry skin) and the price point is great too (24$)! The Balm has sales quite often and if you have the patience to wait you can grab these for a steal! If you have extremely fair skin this will work more as a blush topper and if you are on the other end of the spectrum, this would be a great highlight.

Have you tried the Cindy Lou Manizer? What is your current favorite highlighter?

Until next time…ciao!!

My current travel makeup bag !

Hello folks!

September was a really busy month with lots of work related stuff along with quite a bit of travel sprinkled in! October looks like another travel busy month for me and so I thought of sharing with you guys what makeup items I plan to carry with me for my trip next week πŸ™‚

Travel makeup bag :)
Travel makeup bag πŸ™‚

I really love my old ‘beginning to get tatty’ makeup bag! It is by this Thai brand called Jim Thompson whose products include bags and Β silk textiles with lovely prints. I have had this bag for years and picked it up in Singapore. It is a sufficiently large bag which flattens really easily so you can slide it in between clothes in your suitcase to lessen any impact on your items as your suitcase is thrown in and out of planes πŸ˜‰ Now lets take a look at what is in this bag!

  1. Ck One mascara

I recently reviewed this mascara on the blog. I did not like it initially, but it has really grown on me and I have been using it almost every time I wear make up these days…so it has to come with me on my travels!

2. Β Milani Ultra Fine Liquid Eyeliner

This is an oldie but a goodie! I was introduced to this inexpensive but awesome liner by the Youtuber Emily Noel. I love how intense and dark the liner is! It is perfect for those days when you want to do nothing but liner and mascara for the eyes πŸ™‚

3. NYX Dark Circle Concealer

I find this concealer to be quite under rated…not too many people talk about it ! It is awesome for correcting any darkness around your eyes since it has that perfect salmon peachy pink tone to neutralize any dark circles. It is available in multiple shades so you can chose one according to your skin tone. A dark circle concealer is always a good idea when travelling (which means change in time zones and limited sleep!)

4. MAC Limited edition Creamsheen in Mystical

I always like to travel with a nude/my lips but better shade since those are my go to low maintenance lip options everyday. This is one of my favorite my lips but better shade..It was part of the aquatics collection that came out in the summer of 2014 I think.

5.Tarina Tarentino conditioning lip sheen in Floriculture

This lipstick has one of the best formulas! It is comfortable and lasts well too. The shade Floriculture can be built up to get a dark lip or worn sheer for a pop of color on the lips. At one point, I used to carry a ton of lipsticks (you know ..to change things up!) while travelling and noticed I use 2 out of the zillion ones I bring along and the 2 are most of the time a neutral one and a more berry/red one. So nowadays, I just take 2 lipsticks in these 2 categories!

6. Laura Geller Balance-n- Brighten in Fair

If you have been reading my blog for a while you’ll know that this is my ultimate favorite powder foundation! I love the finish and find it hassle free to travel with!

7. Tarina Tarantino Jewel Shadow Palette in Dreamy

The formula of this small palette is buttery! There is no other way to describe it πŸ™‚ The shades in the Dreamy palette are neutral (but shimmery) and can be used for everyday looks. I’ll review this beauty in detail sometime soon!!

8. Japonesque Velvet Touch blush in 04

The shade 04 is a pretty dark pink purple shade which is perfect for fall! As a blushoholic I do find it really hard to take just 1 blush with me πŸ˜‰

9. The Balm Cindy Lou Manizer

This has become my go to highlighter! Ever since I got it I have almost stopped using the Mary Lou Manizer since this one looks more natural on my skin.

I carry my makeup brushes, cleansers and skincare stuff in other bags..this bag is usually just for makeup. I hope you enjoyed taking a look at my travel makeup bag! If you have any tips on how to travel light, choosing makeup for travel or any related tips do let me know in the comments section!

Until next time..ciao!!

Beauty haul from Turkey! Part 1

Hello everyone!

As I mentioned in my last post, I just got back from Turkey which is not only fantastic for its culture and food but also shopping πŸ™‚ Before I left for my trip I did do some research on the local brands and best places to buy makeup and skincare items. Today I will share with you a couple of items I picked up while on holiday there and hopefully this will help you plan your shopping if you happen to be travelling to Turkey soon!

Makeup from Turkey!
Makeup haul from Turkey!

First, I’ll talk about the makeup items! I picked up most of these items from a drugstore in Turkey called Gratis. Its very easy to spot in the main shopping street in Istanbul. When I went many of the items were out of stock unfortunately but I still managed to grab a few things!

1. Cindy Lou Manizer

Okay, so this isn’t exactly a Turkish brand but they were having a 40% off sale on the Balm products and I had to pick this up since the after sale price translated to 10 USD !! Score! πŸ˜€ Β I already have the Mary Lou Manizer and really enjoy it, but after using this one a couple of times I think I prefer this since it looks more natural on my skin tone. More on that in a review coming soon!!

2. Essence Lipliner in Satin Mauve

I have heard people talk so much about these and with good reason! They are super creamy and feel amazing on the lips. Again the price tag made me buy it πŸ˜‰

3. Essence blush up in Heatwave

This is such a gorgeous orange peach-pink ombre blush! I have not seen these in the US so I picked it up. I have used it a couple of times and so far its been great!

4. Eklips natural fan brush

I think this is an in house brand of Gratis and its supposed to be a dupe for ecotools? It is eco friendly and cruelty free. It was around 1 USD and for that price it works amazingly well! I used it to apply highlighter on my cheek bones and it does a beautiful job. After trying this out, I really wanted to pick up some more brushes from the brand but sadly I didn’t have time to go back to Gratis 😦 If you plan on visiting Turkey do check out this line of brushes!

5. Golden Rose Velvet matte lipstick in number 19

Golden Rose is a Turkish brand and I went to their main store in Istanbul. Before I left for Turkey I checked out Instagram posts by Turkish beauty bloggers to get an idea of the local makeup scene πŸ˜‰ (I know I know..I sound like I have a makeup addiction problem!) and this was one of the lipsticks that was constantly praised! This cost me around 6 USD and the texture of the lipstick is amazing! Its so creamy and comfortable on the lips..I’ll probably review it soon if your curious about swatches πŸ™‚ The guy who helped me out in the store said that a lot of the shades are dupes for MAC lipsticks. I actually have only 1 limited edition MAC lipstick so I can’t vouch for it but I do like the shade I picked out!

6. Pastel nail polish in number 108?Β 

I saw tons of nail polish in Turkey for really cheap prices but eventually I picked up only this one since I don’t have this color in my collection. The shade has no name but I think its number 108..again not sure! I have used this once and the quality is really good..no chipping for more than a week πŸ™‚ I think the brand Pastel and even Golden Rose is available in some European countries. The shade 108 looks perfect for summer, don’t you think!

7. Golden Rose matt top coat

I bought this on a whim and its actually quite cool to use! I can see myself using this for nail art! I tried it out once with one of my OPI nail polishes and it really converted the shade into a matt one when I used this as a top coat. It was really cheap and so I Β thought it might be gimicky, but it works !

This post got so long I decided to split it into 2 parts! I will talk about some skincare items I got from Turkey in part 2. Hope you’ll enjoyed taking a peak into the makeup items I picked up! Stay tuned for part 2 coming soon!

Until next time…ciao!!!