Sep 28, 2014

Chanel Vitalumiere Loose Powder Foundation with Mini Kabuki Brush (SPF 15 - B50)

Chanel Vitalumiere Loose Powder Mini Kabuki Brush SPF 15 Beige B50 -  Review Photos Swatches FOTD
Chanel Vitalumiere Loose Powder Foundation with Mini Kabuki Brush
(available HERE - £55)
Chanel Vitalumiere Loose Powder Foundation is the newest foundation offering from the brand and claims to bring the benefits of the "Chanel Light Box" to the skin - a new generation of high-definition pigments to smoothen the skin and blur imperfections, giving the skin a radiant, natural look.  Chanel has also included an adorable mini kabuki brush with the foundation.  As far as I know, this foundation comes in 5 shades, and I picked the shade Beige 50.  I have been using this foundation for a while now and finally got around to posting a review.  The post is a bit picture heavy, but do scroll on for a peek at the new Chanel Vitalumiere Loose Powder foundation.

Sep 2, 2014

Basic Wear To Work Makeup Look (Liner and a Pop of Color) And A Quick Update

Easy Everyday Office Work Makeup Basics
Easy and quick wear-to-work makeup.

Hiiiiii! :D  I have been away for a while, and I finally got a bit of time today to do a quick post/update.  The reason I have been so short of time is I started a new job.  I used to work from home before, but now I have to go to office, and goodness gracious, I don't know if I will ever get used to these early morning hours!  I leave quite early, but I am awfully lucky with missing the rush-hour snarly traffic.  Work takes up a good 10 hours of my day, and I barely have time to grab some dinner and sleep.  On a good day, I get to check mail.  Hopefully, there will be a bit more time in another month or two.

A good thing about going to work is I get to use all the makeup I have been hoarding all these days.  I take the bus/public transit to work, though, and most people at my workplace are pretty low-key with their makeup, so I keep my makeup routine simple (like I was ever adventurous!).   Here's a look at some of my wear-to-work basics and an easy, everyday makeup look that I have been sporting of late.

Aug 10, 2014

India Circus by Krsna Mehta

India Circus is a contemporary design label offering affordable and sophisticated designs by renowned designer Krsna Mehta, Design Director of India Circus. The collections offer various life-style products, ranging from home decor to personal accessories. Drawing inspiration from the flora & fauna as well as the rich heritage of India, we seek to bring to you a range of products right from home decor to personal accessories that is flavoured with the Indian aesthetic.

I came across India Circus a while back when I saw it mentioned on a couple of Indian blogs that I follow.  The name was intriguing enough for me to want to check out the website, and sure enough, they do seem to carry some really interesting products.  The brand has a mix of lifestyle and decor items as well as some fun accessories such as wallets, watches, bags, and other cool knick knacks. When I got a chance to try up a few items from the website, I decided to go with something I actually would put to good use, so I (finally) got a cover for my Samsung S4 and some coffee mugs. Odd choice for a beauty blogger, I suppose, but to be fair, I rarely post anything any more :P :P  Anywho, just wanted to share a few photos of some goodies I received thanks to the folks at India Circus.

Jul 29, 2014

Matrix Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong Haircare

Matrix Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong Haircare Strengthening Shampoo Conditioner Deep Smoothing Serum Review
Matrix Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong Haircare Range
Strengthening Shampoo, Conditioner, and Deep Smoothing Serum
Products provided c/o Matrix India

My hair has always been frizzy and dry, and because it's also wavy, the overall effect is, well, quite a mess.  Blow drying works great at making it look manageable, but it's not the best option in the long run with the heat just making my hair drier and also more prone to breakage - and hairfall.  My usual haircare routine, though, is shampoo-conditioner-serum, and on most days, that's about how all I have the time for.  I am always on the lookout for moisturizing shampoos and conditioners that can keep my hair healthy and strong and also keep it frizz-free and manageable even when I just air-dry it.  A couple of days back, I got a chance to try out products from the Matrix Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong haircare range which claims to make hair stronger and reduce hair fall.  The secret ingredient in the formula -
Intra-Cylane + bamboo.  Known for its resilience, this apparently fill gaps in the cuticle and enhances hair fiber integrity.  Scroll on to read my experience with the products.

Jul 11, 2014

Chanel Sublimage Eye Cream

Chanel Sublimage La Creme Yeux Ultimate Regeneration Eye Cream - Antiaging Skincare - Review
Chanel Sublimage La Creme Yeux
Ultimate Regeneration Eye Cream

I have had a bit of an obsession with Chanel for a while, starting with makeup and of late moving on to skincare.  The Resynchronizing line - day and night serums - are part of my daily skincare routine as is the Chanel Sublimage Eye Cream.  I got a couple of sample tubes of this cream thanks to a particularly generous SA at Saks, and I picked up a full-size jar soon as I was done using those.

Jul 10, 2014

Copper and Green Eye Makeup with MAC Eyeshadows (Coppering, Soba, Saddle)

Copper Green Eye Makeup - MAC Eyeshadows Coppering Soba Saddle

Coppering was one of the first eyeshadows I bought from MAC.  It was a bit of an impulse buy, and after getting back home and trying it under natural lighting, I found the color a bit too frosty and bright for my liking.  I didn't use it much after that, and it's only recently that I have finally figured out how to use this color.  Coppering pairs beautifully with a lot of the MAC warm brown eyeshadows, and for today's makeup look, I have added Urban Decay's Loaded to the mix.

Jul 7, 2014

Urban Decay Glide-On Eyeliner Pencil in Loaded

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eyeliner Pencil Loaded - Swatches Review FOTD Photos
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eyeliner Pencil in Loaded

I don't know what I was thinking when I splurged on the Urban Decay vault of pencils, but it's only when I started working my way through reviewing them that I noticed just how easy it is to replace one shade for the other.  I have been meaning to review Loaded for a while now and always end up applying some other random dark blue/green color, realizing the mistake only when all the good natural lighting has gone off.  Who knew a green, a darkened green, and a brownish green can all look the same?! :P  Yes, most people would read the name on the pencil, but oh well...  Anywho, moving on to the pencil, Urban Decay's 24/7 pencil in Loaded is a darkened green with a hint of grey to it.  The Sephora website describes this as a shimmery pencil, but I think this has more of a sheen to it than a proper shimmer.  Scroll on for more photos.

Jun 30, 2014

L'Oreal Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H - Espresso (173) - Review, Swatch, FOTD, Photos

L'Oreal Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H Espresso 173 Review Swatch FOTD Photos
Wearing L'Oreal Infallible Lacquer Eyeliner in Espresso along my lashline and waterline.

L'Oreal Infallible Lacquer Liners have been around for a while now, but for some reason, I have never bothered trying these out before.  It's always been the Maybelline Gel liners for me.  It was only when my local Target ran out of Maybelline liners that I was finally forced to buy this L'Oreal version.  Of course, as it usually happens with most of my late discoveries, this is my current favorite eyeliner, and probably even one of my all-time favorites!  Scroll on for photos, swatches, and more.

Jun 29, 2014

Ralph Lauren Romance Eau de Parfum Spray

Fragrance Review - Ralph Lauren Romance Perfume Spray for Women
Ralph Lauren Romance Eau de Parfum Spray

The women's fragrance that evokes the timeless essence of falling in love.  Discover the sensual essence of velvety woods, extravagant florals, and seductive musk.
Fragrance Notes:  Sungoddess Rose, Marigold, Ginger, Chamomile Oil, Yellow Freesia, White Violet, Lotus Flower, Day Lily, Patchouli, Oakmoss, Musk.
Style:  A timeless scent for all seasons.

Jun 27, 2014

NARS Eyeshadow (Singles) Swatches

NARS Eyeshadows Singles Swatches - Matte Shimmer Night Series
NARS Eyeshadow Singles

NARS seems to be a brand that is synonymous with blushes - rather, one blush - but my favorites from the brand would be the eyeshadows.  I have a bunch of single eyeshadows as well as a few duos, most of which are among my favorites.  I haven't tried the recently launched Dual Intensity eyeshadows yet, and I amn't too keen on giving those a try either - haven't had much luck with wet-dry formulations so far.  The older single NARS eyeshadows, though, I can't get enough of.  I swatched these some time back, and while this does help me with when I want to buy online, I do think the texture is something you just have to go to a counter to try.   That said, scroll on for swatches on my darker Indian skin tone.

On My Nails Today: Pink Champagne on Lies

Maybelline Glitter Mania Pink Champagne Lavender Lies Color Show Nail Polish Manicure

Maybelline India recently added in some new colors to their Color Show nail polish range - Glitter Mania.  As the name suggests, these polishes are pure glitter, a mix of fine and larger chunks, and give a textured finish to the nails.  I got to try out one of the Glitter Mania shades, Pink Champagne.  This is a lovely soft shimmery rose shade that looks beautiful on it's own and also works well paired with other shades from the Color Show range.  I used a creamy lavender from the regular ColorShow range - Lavender Lies - and tried a simple tape manicure.  Scroll on for an easy how-to.

Jun 26, 2014

An Easy Daytime/Neutral Brown Smokey Eye

Easy Brown Smokey Eyes - Daytime Neutral - Makeup Tutorial
An easy soft brown smokey eye for the day.

I have had pretty limited options for the past few days as far as makeup goes - not by choice, of course.  I am trying to get everything organized and arranged neatly ( far, not working out), and to avoid having everything strewn about on the floor, I have been using the same few products over and over again.  A basic brown eyeliner (L'Oreal Gel Eyeliner in Brown) and a neutral eyeshadow quad (Avon Chocolate Sensation eyeshadow quad) have been the staples.  Both of these products are my idea of perfect neutrals, neither too warm nor really cool toned, and with the just the right amount of matte and shimmer mixed in.  Today's makeup look uses these basics and is an easy soft brown smokey eye that would work well for the day.  Here's what I used:

Jun 13, 2014

The Body Shop Satsuma Body Butter

TBS Satsuma Body Butter - Review
The Body Shop Satsuma Body Butter ($20)

This rich and creamy Body Butter is a feast for the skin.  It melts straight in to the skin giving 24-hour hydration and leaving skin feeling soft and smooth.  Contains Community Fair Trade shea butter and smells of fresh satsuma. Great for normal to dry skin.

MAC Uninterrupted Pro Longwear Eyeshadow - Photos, Swatch, Review, FOTD

MAC Uninterrupted Eyeshadow - Prolongwear - Swatch Review Photos FOTD
MAC Pro Longwear Eyeshadow - Uninterrupted ($21)

MAC products seem to get a lot of love from the makeup blogging world, and I have to confess a lot of times I find all the rave reviews floating around a bit overwhelming.  It took me a while to actually check out products at MAC counters, but over time, I have found quite a few gems in the brand.  MAC Uninterrupted is one such find and definitely one of my favorite eyeshadows.

Jun 9, 2014

Maybelline Colossal Kohl Turquoise - Photos, Swatches, Review, FOTD

Maybelline India Colossal Kohl Turquoise Swatches Review Photos FOTD
Wearing Maybelline Colossal Kajal in Turquoise

Most Indian girls consider kohl - or kajal - a makeup must-have, and there are quite a lot of options for black eyeliner in the Indian market.  Maybelline's Colossal Kajal is one such truly black liner, and buoyed perhaps by the success of the black liner, Maybelline India recently launched a colored version of the same - Colossal Kajal in Turquoise.  I got my hands on one of these, thanks to the folks at Maybelline India, and here's a look at how this fares with my testing :P

May 22, 2014

Fresh Rose Mask

A hydrating and toning mask with a cooling gel formula infused with pure rosewater and real rose petals. Historically romantic and classically fragrant, the rose flower yields a precious oil brimming with nutrients that naturally soothe the skin and stimulate the senses. Infused with 50 percent pure rosewater and an average of two-and-a-half roses per jar, this unique mask restores radiance and suppleness to all skin types. The addition of cucumber extract and aloe vera reduce inflammation and calm the skin, while green tea helps brighten and protect.

Fresh Skincare Rose Face Mask review
Fresh Rose Face Mask

I picked up the Fresh Rose Face Mask based on its claims of being a hydrating-toning mask.  It was some time in the winter that I bought this mask, and since my skin was quite a bit dehydrated at that time, I wasn't really too keen on this mask.  Fast forward to summer now, and this is one of my most used masks now!

May 17, 2014

SheaMoisture African Black Soap with Shea Butter - Face and Body Bar

SheaMoisture African Black Soap Face Body Bar
SheaMoisture African Black Soap Face and Body Bar - $5

SheaMoisture's African Black Soap with Shea Butter is designed to cleanse, hydrate and calm problem skin.  Helps to balance oily skin for clearer complexions.  Use daily.  Ethically traded ingredients sustainably produced.  Pioneering community commerce and Fair Trade since 1912.  Tested on their family for four generations.  Never on animals.

Apr 6, 2014

YSL Baby Doll Kiss and Blush - Photos, Swatches

YvesSaintLaurent Kiss and Blush Baby Doll - Makeup Swatches Photos
YSL Baby Doll Kiss and Blush ($40)

Babydoll Kiss and Blush by Yves Saint Laurent adds a perfect flirtatious pop of color to your lips and cheeks. The blendable, air-whipped mousse formula has a soft matte finish and features an exclusive applicator for precise application and buildable color that goes exactly where you want it to.

YSL always comes up with some really cool new makeup launches every season, and the latest from the brand is the YSL Baby Doll Kiss and Blush.  This is a hybrid of a lipgloss and a blush - a soft matte finish, quite pigmented, and really easy to apply with the soft applicator.  Scroll on for more photos and swatches.

Mar 21, 2014

Clinique Oversized Orange Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm

Clinique Oversized Orange Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm - Review Swatches Photos FOTD
Clinique Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm - Oversized Orange

Orange is a color that pops up every year at the start of spring-summer, and sure enough, this year too orange is the new black  must-have color.  While eyeshadows and blushes are much easier to wear, I find orange lips a little more difficult to pull off, and if like me, you are a little color shy, then give the Clinique Chubby Stick in Oversized Orange a try.

Mar 20, 2014

Chanel Rouge Allure Intense Lipstick - Passion

Chanel Rouge Allure Intense Lipstick - Passion - Review Swatches FOTD
Chanel Rouge Allure Lipstick - Passion
Additional makeup listed below

Chanel red lipsticks are among the most raved about, and I have to admit, they do make some amazing reds.  For someone like me who isn't too comfortable with bold colors, these can also be a bit intimidating because of how intensely pigmented these lipsticks are.  Thanks to some late-night shopping sprees at Chanel online, I have quite a a few samplers of some Chanel red lipsticks, and needless to say, I have barely brushed the surface of even one of these!  Case in point - Chanel Rouge Allure Lipstick in Passion.

Dr. Jart Water Fuse Water-Full Hydrogel Face Mask

Dr. Jart Water Fuse Water-Full Hydrogel Face Sheet Mask with Hyaluronic Acid - Review
Dr. Jart Water Fuse Water-Full Hydrogel Face Mask

Continuing my obsession with sheet masks, the mask I have picked to review today is the Dr. Jart+ Water Fuse Water-Full Hydrogel Mask.  I buy these from Sephora, and these masks are available to buy individually or as a set of 5 (that's slightly cheaper). What's a little different about this mask - compared to other sheet masks I have tried - is that it doesn't come soaked in any serum or essence.  It's a clean, dry-to-touch mask that comes in 2 halves for the upper and lower part of the face.  The mask claims to contain a unique Hydrogel material that helps the hyaluronic acid (sodium hyaluronate) and other natural extracts contained in the mask to get into the skin better and provide better hydration than a moisturizer.

Mar 17, 2014

Urban Decay Demolition - 24/7 Glide-On Eyeliner Pencil

Urban Decay Demolition - 24-7 Glide-On Eyeliner Pencil - Swatches Photos Review FOTD
Urban Decay Demolition - 24/7 Glide-On Eyeliner Pencil

Urban Decay Glide-On Pencil Eyeliners are among my favorite makeup products - so much so that I bought the UD Vault when it first came out.  While I can't say that I need/want or will use every color in the UD eyeliner range, there are a couple of colors that I absolutely will repurchase.  Demolition - a deep matte brown - is definitely on that list.  It's a dark enough brown to show up on my darker eyelids, but it isn't as harsh as a black eyeliner, so it's the perfect color for me to use when I want a smudgey/thick line along my lashline and also along the waterline.

Mar 16, 2014

Chanel Cream Blush - Intonation (69) - Swatches, Review, FOTD

Chanel Cream Blush Intonation 69 - Photos Swatches Review FOTD
Le Blush Creme de Chanel - Intonation (69)

Chanel cream blush Intonation launched a while back as part of the Chanel Spring 2014 makeup collection - funny how parts of the country are just starting to see some sun but spring makeup collections are already "a bit old" :P  Back to the blush, though, this is a light coral pink that translates to mostly light pink on my skin.  The packaging is classic black Chanel compact, similar to what the powder blushes come in but smaller size - lesser quantity.

Burberry Nail Polish Sage Green (No. 420)

Burberry Nail Polish Sage Green No 420 - Photos Review NOTD Swatches

On my nails today, I have the perfect nail polish for St. Patrick's day - Burberry Sage Green (No 420).  Going by the name, I expected this to be a lighter, softer green, but this is a much deeper green.  It has a creamy glossy finish, and the formula is fabulous - goes on smoothly and streakfree.  I can actually get away with just 1 coat, but 2 coats gives the perfect  opaque glossy finish.  While Burberry Sage Green won't be my first pick for a wear-to-office nail color, but it does look much better than I expected :P

Mar 14, 2014

When TravelMate Essence Gel Face Mask

When Travelmate Essence Gel Sheet Face Masks - Review
When Travelmate Essence Gel Masks ($28)

I love using face masks and I always have at least 3 or 4 different masks with me at any time, but while I find it quite relaxing to put them on and lie down, I definitely don't like the washing up afterwards part.  Yes, it really is no big deal to most people, but I much prefer masks that can be used and tossed - sort of like the peel-off masks.  That's one reason why sheet masks are some of my favorite face masks.  I have tried quite a few of them - most of which I have really liked - and the one mask I always buy is the When Travelmate Essence Gel Mask.  I have always bought this from Sephora, though it doesn't seem to be available there right now :(

NARS Blushes - Swatches

NARS Cosmetics Makeup Blush Swatches on Darker Indian Skin
NARS Cosmetics - Blush

Touted as the best and the must-have blushes, NARS definitely seems to be - as they claim - the authority on blushes!   My first NARS blush was Liberte, and I also have NARS Orgasm (a mini GWP), Taos, Seduction, and Boys Don't Cry (limited edition from the Pierre Hardy collection).  Despite it's popularity, NARS Orgasm is the one I rarely/never use.  I get barely any color showing on my darker skin and a whole lot of disco shimmer - not my favorite look.  The limited edition Boys Don't Cry would be my favorite blush by NARS.  I didn't buy it for a while after it was released, but I happened to swatch it one time at Sephora and fell in love with the color and the formula.  I think I got lucky since it went out of stock soon after I bought it.  Anyhow, here's a look at the swatches of some NARS blushes on my darker Indian skin tone.

Mar 10, 2014

MAC Soba Eyeshadow - Photos, Swatches, Reiew, FOTD

MAC Soba Eyeshadow - Photos Swatches Review
MAC Soba Eyeshadow ($10 - refill)

If I had my way, I would pick up every brown eyeshadow and every neutral eyes palette, so it shouldn't be a shocker that MAC's Soba eyeshadow finds a spot in my list of MAC must-haves.  This is a satin finish warm golden brown eyeshadow with a bit of golden shimmer mixed in.  The color is great for knocking out the ashy darkness on my eyelids,  and it's a perfect pick for me to use as an all-over lid color.

Mar 9, 2014

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipticks - Swatches

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipticks - Swatches
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks ($30)

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting lipsticks are a new makeup launch from the brand.  These lipsticks claim to transform lips with multifaceted pigments to create definition and a time-release moisture complex to keep them hydrated throughout the day.   Here's a look at the swatches on my darker Indian skin tone.

Burberry Nail Polish: Mink (No 105)

Burberry Nail Polish Mink No105 Photos Swatches NOTD Review
Burberry Nail Polish - Mink (No 105)

It's been a while since I did a nail polish post, mostly because it has been a while since I actually bothered to put on a nail polish.  Yes, I am that girl who has a miniature stockpile of polishes but walks around with nekkid bare nails :-|  Anywho, the color I have on today is one from Burberry - Mink.  A perfect neutral, this is a light taupey brown color that leans a bit greyish green depending on the light.

Mar 7, 2014

Burberry for Women (Classic) Eau de Parfum

Burberry for Women is a fruity oriental fragrance that is fresh and sensual, capturing the understated elegance of the brand's heritage.  Top notes of black currant, bergamot and green apple open up to embrace a heart of cedarwood, jasmine, moss and sandalwood.  Base notes of musk and vanilla round out the scent, making it warm and voluptuous.

Burberry Classic Eau de Parfum for Women Perfume Review
Burberry Classic for Women Eau de Parfum

NARS Pro Prime Smudge-Proof Eyeshadow Base

NARS Pro Prime Eyeshadow Base Smudgeproof Makeup Primer - Review
NARS Smudge-Proof Eyeshadow Base ($25)  
I got this as a Sephora points perk or a GWP

Generally, makeup crazy girls (and guys) are a pretty united bunch - we love a good red lipstick and roll our eyes the same when someone doesn't get our obsession with the Naked palettes - but a while back I heard whispers of how the makeup world is divided over, of all things, a makeup primer :P  I always thought the best eyeshadow primer was the Urban Decay Primer Potion, but apparently, there were people out there who said the same about the NARS Smudge-Proof Eyeshadow Base.  So of course, I just had to find out for myself!

Mar 6, 2014

Quick, Easy, and Simple Everyday Makeup

Everyday Neutral Makeup - Quick Easy Simple Steps

Most times in "real life" when I do get a chance to slap on makeup and step out of the house, I am invariably in a mad rush to reach some place in 5 minutes, so I never get the time to actually plan and coordinate my outfit with my makeup.  That's one reason why I almost always go for looks that involve a quick liner and some tinted moisturizer.  On the rare occasions that I do get the time to put on an eyeshadow, I use a warm brown just because that's a safe pairing with any color.  Today's makeup is just that - neutral brown eye makeup paired with a soft reddish coral gloss and a bright blush.  Here's a look at the products used and a quick and easy how-to.

Mar 3, 2014

Montagne Jeunesse Crushed Raspberry Mango Fruit Smoothie Pore Cleansing Face Mask

Montagne Jeunesse Crushed Raspberry Mango Fruit Smoothie Pore Cleansing Face Mask

I was in a bit of a dry skin phase for the past few months, and I had finally got around to accepting the theory that skin dries out as we age and looking forward to a lifetime of shea butter massages or whatever it is that dry-skinned girls and guys indulge in.  Turns out, it was just the weather because while the aging part is all going on just fine, but my skin is back to it's oily self.  And that means clay masks are back in my life :D  My latest obsession is this Montagne Jeunesse Crushed Raspberry Mango Fruit Smoothie Pore Cleansing Face Mask.  

Mar 2, 2014

Bobbi Brown Art Sticks - Photos, Swatches

Lipstick meets liner - get ready for the greatest multi-tasking lip around. This chunky pencil glides on effortlessly and delivers a creamy matte finish to instantly punch up any look. Available in 8 statement-making shades.

Bobbi Brown Art Sticks - Swatches - Cassis Sunset Orange Electric Pink Cherrywood Rose Brown Harlow Red Bright Raspberry

Bobbi Brown Art Sticks are a fun new launch from the brand.  Well, sort of new, because a quick Google search brought up Bobbi Brown Lip Crayons, but I was quite unaware of their existence :P   Art Sticks combine the wood pencil packaging and design of a lipliner - chubbier versions of the regular liners - with the color and creaminess of lipsticks.  I knew I would love these just because of the supercute packaging, but I also like the soft matte finish and the fun, wearable colors.  These come with a sharpener so you don't have to worry about getting one to fit the plus size pencils.  Scroll on for more photos of the new Bobbi Brown Art sticks and swatches on my darker Indian skin.

Givenchy Ombre Couture Cream Eyeshadows - Swatches

Givenchy Ombre Couture Cream Eyeshadows - Swatches - Blanc Satin Beige Mousseline Rose Dentelle Bleu Soie Taupe Velours Khaki Brocart Gris Organza Prune Taffetas Brun Cachemire
Givenchy Ombre Couture Cream Eyeshadows ($23)

A new generation of creamy, waterproof, long-lasting eye shadow.  These gorgeous shadows glide on instinctively, hugging the curves of the eyelid, and then dry down to a powdery finish for up to 16 hours of long-wearing, waterproof color. The chic, saturated shades can be layered or mixed to create your own unique signature color or ombre combination.

NARS Matte Multiples - Photos, Swatches

NARS brings vibrant pops of color and sensual sun-kissed hues to lips and cheeks with the new Matte Multiple.  Founder and Creative Director Fran├žois Nars takes one of the brand’s most innovative and iconic products and adds a modern twist on the cult classic.  Available in seven shades from ginger pink to golden bronze, the Matte Multiple features a creamy, lightweight formula that delivers buildable, long-lasting, hydrating color for lips and cheeks.  This innovative formula can be applied dry for a soft yet vibrant matte effect or wet for a rich and vivid finish that melts into skin.

There are quite a few multi-use lip/cheek combination products in the market, and NARS Multiples are definitely some of the best.  NARS Matte Multiples are the newest additions - same concept as the original Multiples but with a creamy matte finish.  Here's a look at the swatches on my darker Indian skin tone.

Mar 1, 2014

NARS Gentle Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover

A high-performance, extremely mild makeup remover that removes all types of makeup, including waterproof.  The non-greasy solution glides across skin leaving a silky feel without any residue.  Natural ingredients calm irritation. Enriched with aloe and cucumber, it soothes the delicate skin around the eyes.  Contains hyaluronic acid known for comforting and hydrating the skin. It’s gentle enough for contact-lens wearers, is non-comedogenic, dermatologist-tested, ophthalmologist-tested, and suitable for sensitive eyes.

NARS Gentle Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover - Review
NARS Gentle Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover ($25)
Bottle in pic is a sampler/GWP from Sephora

It's been ages since I actually went out and bought a makeup remover.  I was using Bioderma for a while, ran out of it, and have just been too lazy to reorder.  The good thing is I finally got around to using up all the samples that I have been hoarding all this while.  Like this bottle of NARS Gentle Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover that was part of a Sephora points perk from ages back.  This is a biphase cleanser with two layers of floating "stuff" and claims to get rid of even the most stubborn makeup without irritating eyes/skin.

Feb 28, 2014

Urban Decay Naked Ultra Nourishing Lipgloss - Photos, Swatches

Urban Decay Naked Lipgloss - Photos Swatches - Beso Freestyle Rule34 Walk of Shame Naked Lovechild Streak Liar Nooner
Urban Decay Naked Ultra Nourishing Lipgloss ($20) 
Love the makeup on the model!

Urban Decay sure has a winning formula with its Naked series - the eyeshadow palettes, foundations, powders - and the latest in the range is the Urban Decay Naked Lipgloss.  Available in 9 soft, neutral shades, these lipglosses would fit in perfectly whether it's a soft neutral look you are going for or pairing with a dark smokey eye.  They also claim to contain moisturizing ingredients like vitamin E, avocado oil, and sheat butter to keep the lips hydrated.  Here's a look at the swatches on my darker Indian skin tone.

Clinique All About Shadow 8-Pan Palette - Limited Edition Nudes (Neutral Territory)

A deluxe-sized mirrored compact filled with eight beautifully neutral shades.  Mix, match, and layer to create a wardrobe of looks, from subtle and understated to dramatically contoured.  Crease and fade-resistant, these shadows are presented in a deluxe-sized mirrored compact with a dual-ended sponge/brush applicator. 

Clinique All About Shadow 8 Pan Palette Limited Edition Nudes Neutral Territory Photos Swatches
Clinique All About Shadow 8-Pan Palette
Limited Edition Nudes - Neutral Territory2

I have a small 2-shadow palette from Clinique that I got as part of a GWP ages back, but other than that, I haven't had much experience with Clinique eyeshadows.  I did swatch some of the newer Clinique All About Shadow Quads and wasn't too impressed with most of them.  I had similar expectations from the Clinique All About Shadow 8-Pan Palette too, but I had to give the colors a try since this is a neutral palette.  Turns out, this particular palette - Limited Edition Nudes - Neutral Territory2 (okay, I really cannot figure out which of these is the shade name) - is a really lovely neutral palette.  The packaging is the usual understated Clinique and the colors included are lovely browns and beiges with a healthy mix of mattes and shimmers.  Here's a look at the swatches on my darker Indian skin.

Feb 27, 2014

Clinique Cheek Pop Blushes - Photos, Swatches

Discover pure, natural cheek color that looks virtually powderless. This silky smooth, stay-true formula comes in a shade for every season for an effortless, natural blush of just-pinched pop. To use, swirl color onto brush and sweep onto apples of cheeks. Gently blend up towards the cheekbones and temples.

Clinique Cheek Pop Blushes - Photos Swatches - Berry Pop - Plum Pop - Peach Pop - Ginger Pop
Clinique Cheek Pop Blushes ($21) 
L to R:  Plum Pop, Peach Pop, Ginger Pop, Berry Pop

I have always associated Clinique with pristine, white counters and SAs in long white coats...and skincare.  There's hardly anything I use from the Clinique makeup range, apart from the Chubby sticks, and I don't usually associate the brand with anything girly or cute (okay, the Chubby sticks are kinda cute).  A while back, though, I saw the Clinique Cheek Pops - adorable little pots of blushes with a cute flower design and cheeful bright colors - so of course, I had to go try these out at my local Sephora.  Here's a look at the blushes, photos and swatches on my darker Indian skin.

NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette - Swatches

NARS Cosmetics introduces the NARSissist Eye Palette, named for and inspired by the brand’s devoted fans and cult followers, this inaugural palette will set the stage for future NARSissist products to come.  The limited-edition palette features 15 of the NARSissist community’s most beloved and inspiring shades in one compact, ready-to-wear every day, every way. Wear one shade on its own for captivating color or play with the possibilities by layering different shades for an unlimited range of effects.

NARS Narsissist Eyeshadow Palette - Swatches
NARSissist Eye Palette ($79) 
Image source:

I finally got a chance to check the much-awaited (at least by the NARS crazy lot...okay, meeeee) NARSissist eye palette at my local Sephora last weekend.  The 15 shades included in the palette cover a range of neutrals and dark shadows, and at $79, this definitely is a lot more wallet-friendly than picking up the colors as individual duos or singles (NARS single eyeshadows cost $25 each and duos $35).  Anywho, here's a look at the colors on my darker Indian skin tone.

Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser

This creamy, foaming, antioxidant-rich cleanser gently cleanses, nourishes, and hydrates.  It deeply purifies and pampers skin, infusing delicate nourishment with African red tea, a youth-restoring antioxidant to strengthen skin, vitamin C to brighten and firm, and borage seed oil to soothe and nourish.  Bright and energizing citrus extracts of grapefruit, orange, and tangerine purify and intoxicate the skin senses.  Formulated without parabens, sulfates, phthalates.

Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser Face Wash - Review
Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser ($30)

Ole Henriksen seems to be quite a favorite among a lot of bloggers (and also at least one skincare-obsessed friend of mine), so I just had to try out something from the brand.  A face wash always seems like a safe bet, plus I had seen this in a Lisa Eldridge video, so of course, I had to give it a try!  The cleanser claims to be packed with antioxidant and brightening ingredients such as vitamin C, borage seed oil, and African red tea with extracts of grapefruit and tangerine to give it a fresh citrus scent.

Feb 21, 2014

Crabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Hand Scrub with Pumice

Reward hardworking hands with an herbal treat, courtesy of our Gardeners Hand Scrub with Pumice.  Formulated with aloe, honey, and allantoin, this scrub features two types of ultra-fine pumice to buff away soil, dirt, and other impurities.  Skin is instantly softened and refreshed - the way you feel after wandering through a fragrant English garden.

Crabtree-Evelyn Gardeners Hand Scrub with Pumice - Review
Crabtree-Evelyn Gardeners Hand Scrub with Pumice ($22)

I have quite an obsession with hand care potions and lotions and am always trying out new creams and scrubs to help out my dry hands.  My favorites are the 60 Second Fix for Hands (scrubs and creams) from Crabtree & Evelyn.  A while back, though, I picked up another of their scrubs - Crabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Hand Scrub with Pumice.  This is a scrub meant extra grubby hands :P

Feb 20, 2014

L'Occitane Aromachologie Shampoo and Conditioner

Made with 5 essential oils - extracts from angelica, lavender, sweet orange, ylang-ylang, and geranium - L'Occitane's Aromachologie range of shampoos, conditioners, and protection masks capture the highest concentration of plant benefits, allowing the products to penetrate well, work fast, and have an excellent capacity to carry natural nutrients to the hair that are essential for its vitality.

LOccitane Aromachologie Haircare - Shampoo Conditioner - Review
L'Occitane Aromachologie Shampoo and Conditioner
(Samples as part of a L'Occitane US FB promotion)

I got to try the L'Occitane Aromachologie shampoo and conditioner for free thanks to a promo on the L'Occitane (US) Facebook page.  One of those "like us, print coupon, get sample" things that actually did end in me getting the samples as advertised!  Seriously, don't get me started on the number of email and FB promos that I have signed up for and never heard from again :-|  Anyway, back to the shampoo and conditioner, the L'Occitane Aromachologie haircare range claims to harness the power of 5 essential oils to help hair look and feel healthier.

Feb 19, 2014

Chanel Rouge Coco Lipstick Paradis (39)

Chanel Rouge Coco Hydrating Creme Lipstick Paradis 39 - Swatch Photos FOTD
Chanel Rouge Coco Hydrating Creme Lip Color - Paradis
I do have a few Chanel lipsticks, but I amn't a huge fan of the formula (except for the Rouge Coco Shines) because they just don't seem to work on my dryness-prone lips.  I have a few samplers, though, from ages back, and every once in a while I give one of them a try.  Today's pick - Chanel Rouge Coco lipstick in Paradis.  It's a lovely, soft, warm-toned pink with just a touch of coral and a subtle pearl mixed in.

Feb 17, 2014

Origins Drink Up 10 Minute Mask to Quench Skin's Thirst

When skin faces a marathon of dehydrating circumstances, fluid levels can run too low.  Smoothness evaporates.  Skin feels tight and flaky.  What it needs is a great big gulp.  This thirst-quenching mask contains algae extracts to deliver an extra helping of hydration while emollient-rich apricot kernel oil acts like a fountain of youth.  Feel skin drink in the softness, lap up the luxury.  For combination to dry skin.

Origins Drink Up 10 Minute Face Mask to Quench Skins Thirst - Review
Origins Drink Up 10 Minute Mask to Quench Skin's Thirst ($24)

Every once in a while, my oily-combination skin decides it needs a break from all it's acne and blackhead-forming work and does a complete U-turn by going all dry and flaky.  I pick up some heavy-duty moisturizer, and of course, skin goes back to its normal oily self plus an extra pimple or two to show for my efforts.  It was during one such dry skin spells that I picked up the Origins Drink Up 10 Minute Mask to Quench Skin's Thirst.  I have no idea why or how I stumbled on to this, but this is one impulse buy I am truly thankful for!

DHC Premium Lipstick in OR112

Age-defying lipsticks.  Hydrating, satin-finished DHC Premium Lipstick GE helps your lips look younger with revitalizing ingredients and Pure Color Technology—micronized pigments that deflect light for a fuller, plumper appearance.  In six wearable shades perfect for any occasion.  Helps fight vertical fine lines with olive oil, vitamin A and skin-conditioning germanium.

DHC Premium Lipstick OR112 - Orange - Photos, Swatches, Review, FOTD
DHC Lipstick in OR112 - $19 
Product provided for review.

I got to a couple of newly launched makeup products from DHC recently, and the product I am reviewing today is DHC Premium lipstick in OR112.  Creamy and made with lip-friendly ingredients, these lipsticks claim to not only provide creamier application and plumper looking lips, they also claim to, over time, provide antiaging benefits to the lips.

Feb 6, 2014

DHC Scalp Massage Pack

DHC Scalp Massage Pack Haircare Deep Conditioning Clarifying Anti Residue Treatment - Review
DHC Scalp Massage Pack ($22) - available HERE
Product provided for review.

For something I have known and lived with for greater than 30 years now, I still know next to nothing about my hair.  Sure, I know I have wavy frizzy hair that's oh-so-dry, but I have no clue on what will work and what won't on my hair.  For a while, I thought the best thing in the world for it would be some heavy conditioner and treatment that would just beat down control the frizz.  Nope.  In fact, quite to the contrary, my hair just gets worse with any residue buildup, and every now and then I have to use a clarifying shampoo to get it squeaky clean again.  Just doesn't make sense since most clarifying shampoos are drying!  Turns out, I amn't all that unique with my problem/crazy hair because I found a product to sort out just this issue - clarifying as well as moisturizing in one product.  The DHC Scalp Massage Pack is like a conditioner - you massage it into hair after shampoo - leave it on for about 2 minutes and wash it off like any regular conditioner.  So is this the simple solution to my hair woes?

Chanel Levres Scintillantes Glossimer Wild Rose (119)

Chanel Levres Scintillantes Glossimer Wild Rose 119 - Photos Review Swatch FOTD
Chanel  Levres Scintillantes Glossimer - Wild Rose (119)

I am a bit of an impulsive shopper, and the fact that I do most of my shopping online and at odd hours of the night just adds to the problem.  I always find ways to justify the purchases too, and my most abused explanation is "I won't find this in India!"  It's like I have to build a stockpile for when my makeup world ends and I have to go back to India - okay, just to clarify, we do get makeup in India, but we don't have much in terms of sales, and GWPs are almost nonexistent.  I would never, for instance, have got this cute little tube of Chanel Levres Scintillantes Glossimer in Wild Rose that I scored from the Chanel website :D

Feb 3, 2014

MAC Eyeshadow: Swiss Chocolate

MAC Eyeshadow - Swiss Chocolate - Photos Swatches Review FOTD EOTD
MAC Swiss Chocolate 
(US $10.00 - 1.5 g / 0.05 oz)

I have been a bit of a late entrant to the MAC makeup world, and even now, I hardly own anything much from the brand.  I just find the range of colors, products, and formulations so overwhelming, and it doesn't help that most MAC counters I have gone to have these perfect-looking SAs like they just stepped out of some YouTube makeup video - it's all a little too intimidating!  I do have a few MAC eyeshadows, though, that I really, really like and have been using a lot of ever since I bought them.  Mostly mattes and neutrals, and MAC Swiss Chocolate is just that.  MAC describes this as a muted reddish brown, and this is a matte shade.

On my Nails Today: Burberry Nail Polish in Pale Grape

Burberry Nail Polish Pale Grape 410 - Swatches Photos NOTD Review

When Burberry added nail polishes to the makeup range, I was quite enthusiastic and even picked up an early-release set online.  Of course, as is usually the story with a lot of my purchases, once the newness wore off a bit, the polishes just sat there and I never did get around to reviews.  Anywho, the color I have on today is from the Burberry Runway Nail Collection set - Pale Grape 410 - but it's also available to buy on its own now.  The color is a cooler toned bluish purple that, in typical Burberry fashion, is subtle and neutral while still staying a little on the brighter side.

Feb 2, 2014

Today's Makeup: Neutral with a Pop of Pink

Easy Makeup Tutorial - Pop of Pink Blush - Neutral Soft Eyes - Steps How-To

I have never been very regular with my blog posts, but of late, it's been really difficult for me to stick to annny kind of a schedule.  Time management is never going to be on my strengths list :P  This weekend, though, I have been at home for the most part thanks to "the game," and I got a bit of time to click some photos and share this makeup look that I have been sporting for a few days now.  I was checking through my blushes and rediscovered the Burberry Coral Pink - a bright pink that's been wallowing unused for a while now, but as it happens with old makeup rediscovered, this is my new love now :D  I have been pairing it with a soft wash of purple-grey on the eyes, and here's an easy breakdown on the look.