Product Review: Maybelline Color Sensational High Shine Lip Gloss

The other day I picked up the new issue of Fitness magazine and on the back cover was a gorgeous full sized ad for Maybelline’s new Color Sensational High Shine Lip Gloss. The stylized, colorful ad promises to “lavish lips with a molten hot glaze”, describing the new gloss as “super-saturated color meets ultra-clean shine”. Well, damn if this ad didn’t sucker me right in because the next day I was in Wal-Mart and I thought, I need to swing by the make up aisle and check these babies out!

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Maybelline’s Color Sensational High Shine gloss is billed as having more vibrant color, cleaner shine, and a creamier feel. It is the company’s first totally wax-free gloss and is made instead with honey nectar, likely one of the main contributing factors to the gloss’s smooth, velvety texture.

I grabbed up a tube in the shade Almond Crush for $5.50. Almond Crush is an extremely shiny peachy pink shade with a touch of sparkle. Pretty much my perfect gloss formula.

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First things first: it does go on beautifully. Equipped with the standard sponge tip applicator of most glosses it swipes on like buttercream from a tube. It has no stickiness whatsoever, which is a major point for winning me over. Nothing spoils an otherwise great lip gloss like that horrible sticky feeling–as if you’d just applied Elmer’s to your lips. This gloss has none of that–the texture really is honey like and very likable.

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As for the Almond Crush shade, it is a great every day shade of pink. It is a somewhat neutral color which can be worn with many different makeup looks, and the light shimmery aspect of it somewhat brightens up your face. Not too extreme in any direction, it’s a great blend for an essential gloss: a perfect melding of nude meets rosy pink stirred with Tinkerbell’s wand for a touch of sparkle. It definitely lives up to its high shine billing; it’s a very mirror like shine and as you can see in some of the pictures it really reflects the light.

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The wear on this is not bad, either. Although not a long wearing gloss by design, I had it on for about three and a half hours at work before it needed reapplied. Not too shabby for a little more than five bucks, in my opinion.

Buy it for $5.50 here!

One thing they don’t tell you about in the ad is the smell. It doesn’t smell bad, mind you, but there is a bit of fragrance to it–it just has a bit of that “makeuppy” smell. Although I really like having glosses I can’t smell at all, you can smell this one when you are applying it, but as you have it on the fragrance wears off. It’s definitely nothing ti refuse buying it over, just something to be aware of.

Overall, this is a velvety smooth, non sticky, shimmery, shiny gloss. Is it a molten hot glaze for your lips? No. But let’s be honest, that just sounds downright uncomfortable. Is it an awesome every day or frequent wear essential? Definitely. And at $5.50, it’s an incredibly wallet friendly high quality lip product which I would certainly recommend.

P.S.: It’s great for kissing puppies

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But what isn’t? 😉

Happy glossing, beautynistas!

Product Review: Sally Girl Baked Eyeshadow in Gold

Sally Girl Mini Baked Eyeshadow in Gold

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[photo credit & buying info]

I mentioned in my budget beauty shopping tips post that Sally Beauty can be an absolutely amazing resource for really inexpensive finds, and touched on one of my new favorites, the Sally Girl minis.

The Sally Girl line is an adorable budget beauty find you can pick up under your local red canopy. The line features mini lipsticks, eyeshadows, glosses, nail polishes, blushes and bronzers. As I mentioned in the budget beauty shopping post, most are under $1.00. Each item usually retails for 99 cents, but if there is a sale you could pick up an eyeshadow or gloss for even less than that. How can you ask for a better deal?

Even though the Sally Girl items are small, they are all of a really good quality. I have yet to come across one which I didn’t like or wasn’t a really great quality even though it was small and cheap.

Now, I’m a sucker for any baked cosmetic. Baked eyeshadows and blushes are always incredibly tempting, and when I come up against the temptation of baked shadows coupled with the amazing bargain of 99 cent cosmetics, I’m all in. That’s how I ended up testing out the Sally Girl Mini Baked Eyeshadow. I picked up the gold color because the pigmentation in the baked form was really luminescent and pretty.

In case you aren’t familiar with them, baked eyeshadow is precisely what it sounds like: eyeshadow that is processed and created by being baked when it is made. The color is baked in, usually by the sun, creating a smooth, solid circle of pigment. Baked eyeshadow is generally very dynamic because it can be applied either dry for sheer coverage or wet for bold color, and it’s incredibly easy to work with, so I recommend it even for the least experienced beautynista.

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On to the product: this baked eyeshadow is a great texture; it goes on very smoothly and unlike some powders, it doesn’t get all over as you are applying it. Definite plus.

The color is beautiful. It’s an iridescent, starry gold that boasts just the right amount of shimmer. The color, true to baked eyeshadow style, is very pigmented and really catches the light. I have dark brown eyes, and it compliments them very well. Although it would look good on lots of people, I highly recommend it for brown, hazel, or green eyes in this shade.

I also love that this baked shadow is very dynamic.Even though there is not a huge difference between the dry and wet shades, it is still noticeable and best of all, it’s very buildable–one of my favorite aspects. In the picture below, the top swatch is dry shadow, the middle swatch is several layers of dry shadow, and the bottom layer is the same shadow applied wet.

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As you can see the shadow applied dry is very light but still very shimmery. This is great for a subtle metallic shade.

However, the second shade demonstrates how this baked shadow is really buildable and there is a great middle ground in between applying dry and applying wet. You can control how pigmented and shimmery the shadow is just by putting on more layers. Usually when I wear it for every day I will apply a few layers so that the color and shimmer are visible, but it doesn’t pack as much of a punch as the wet application.

The wet application is the most pigmented and you can really see the shimmer. Hopefully you can tell by the picture that it’s a very pretty metallic.

For an amazing 99 cents, there’s a lot you can do with this shimmery gold. Applied dry with one layer it would look great with some chocolate brown liner and subtle mascara on eyes and a dusting of bronzer on your face for a shimmery, sunny every day look. Applied wet or layered it contrasts beautifully with winged black gel eyeliner and several layers of black mascara; add a dusting of rose gold shimmer to really kick it up a notch for nighttime or a fun outing.

Sally Girl Mini baked eye shadows are an outstanding example of how inexpensive does not always equal poor quality. This shadow is a great quality, can do a lot and function for several looks, and comes in an abundance of colors ranging from neutrals to brights, and all for less than a dollar.

Next time you’re near Sally’s, stop in and check out this exclusive brand and pick up a couple of these little puppies. 🙂 At this price, you may even be able to afford to sample a few different shades. I promise you will not be sorry.

Product Review: OPI’s Skyfall Collection’s “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”

Alright, so quite a lot of these have been done already. Reviews of this collection are all over the Internet and most of them are just raving about them and I must tell you now, this one will be no different.

First things first, I am a huge James Bond fan, so the second I got wind of OPI releasing one of their beautiful specialty collections based entirely around the James Bond movies, I was absolutely elated. I could not wait to get my hands on one, two, or heck, all of them. But since buying the entire collection is a tad illogical and the exact opposite of budget conscious, it was definitely time to make some choices…

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  [photo credit]

I bought two of the polishes, Tomorrow Never Dies and On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, but today I’m going to be talking about On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. For the record, although OPI polishes usually retail for $8.50 a piece, myself and my best friend bought ours at our local JCPenney salon where they having a special buy 2 get each for $6 sale, bringing our grand total with tax to only $12.72 for two polishes each. Not too shabby for a budget conscious beautynista, if you ask me.

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OPI describes On Her Majesty’s Secret Service as a “misty-green pewter” which “commands attention”. Not at all a bad summary of what this color turns out to be.

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It’s a very dark greenish-gray which is absolutely packed with glitter. It has gold, silver, blue, green, and in some lights you can even see a touch of pink glitter. If there is one thing I love more than neons, it’s glitter. If you love glitter too, this is the shade for you.

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Photos don’t do this polish justice. They really don’t. You must see it in person and in many different lights to really appreciate all the different shades and aspects of glitter packed into this incredibly unique green-gray shade. Hopefully you can see from these couple of pictures the dynamic quality of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

The texture is incredible as well which I have come to expect from most OPI polishes. I generally have no qualms at all with the quality of this brand. It does begin a little sheer so you do have to layer it on if you want an opaque version of the color. You could do it with three coats, but I used a fourth coat in these pictures to even things out a little. The sheer quality it begins with actually also opens doors to layer this over other colors later on and create unique combinations, making this a reasonable investment for a creative beautynista…or a James Bond addict. 😉

I’ll review Tomorrow Never Dies at a later date, but in the meantime, if you like dark colors and/or glitter and if you like unique, dynamic shades, I definitely recommend On Her Majesty’s Secret Service with absolutely no hesitation. You will not be disappointed!

And in the meantime, GO SEE SKYFALL!!! It is so incredible and if Daniel Craig wasn’t enough eye candy for you, the new Q is adorable.

Happy painting and Skyfalling, beautynistas!

Highlighter Yellow Nails

Today I want to do my first product review for you all. This is a product that was actually a little impulse buy, and at a measly $1.99, a guilt free one at that!

I’ve been seeing a lot from Wet’n’Wild lately. Fergie has a new polish line with them, they’ve recently debuted their Spoiled nail line, and, nearing the lovely holiday of Halloween, their Fantasy Makers line has recently hit shelves, as well. So one day when I was browsing my local CVS and I saw a display of the new Spoiled polish line, I couldn’t resist snatching up a neon, highlighter yellow shade named a kitschy “Did I Dye It Too Blonde?” for just under two dollars.

Spoiled is a CVS exclusive line of nail polishes which Wet’n’Wild describes as a “delightfully decadent, salon quality” line “in every shade and finish imaginable.”

I have an undeniable weakness for neon colors and anytime I spot a new one and have a few bucks, you’ll probably find me buying it. I picked this one up about two weeks ago and was really excited to finally get a chance to try it out.

“Did I Dye It Too Blonde?” is promoted as a member of Spoiled’s sub-line, the “Gala-Ween” line, touted with displays of girls in gorgeously embellished masquerade costumes with cute captions such as, “I don’t do creepy Halloween…I party in style! While everyone else is looking ghoulish, I make sure I look gorgeous.” The line features some other great colors, too, like a neon pink called “Tip Your Waitress” (which I wouldn’t mind adding to my collection) and a super bright green entitled “Permission to Proceed”.

In the bottle, the shade looks like a solid, neon yellow, as if a highlighter has been broken open and poured into a bottle. I probably should’ve known it wouldn’t look like this on my nails, but in my excitement to buy this awesome neon, that fact never crossed my mind. The shade goes on a completely see through funky yellow, as if I had literally taken a highlighter and colored on my nails with it. I kept painting up until I realized it would take about 17 coats to achieve the desired color. At first I was a little disappointed, but fear not…I have a solution.

This is a moment in which I had to employ one of my little beauty cheats which I’ve been doing for a couple of years now: Anytime you have a very translucent shade which you wish to come across more pigmented and with a lot more punch, the best way to make it happen without layering on so many coats of polish that your nails become an actual fire hazard is to start with a white base. Begin with your usual base coat and, once dry, paint on two coats of your go-to shade of opaque white. I used Sally Hansen Hard as Nails French Tip White; it doesn’t have a thin French tip brush so it’s easy to use as an all over shade. Any opaque white will do; chances are you have one in your menagerie of colors if you’ve ever done an at home French mani. If you don’t, there are lots available inexpensively from Sally Hansen, Wet’n’Wild, and many other lines.

Once your white base is in place, you’ve essentially transformed from coloring with highlighter on bare nails to coloring with highlighter on white paper. And where is it going to show up better? White paper, of course!

With my white base, “Did I Dye It Too Blonde?” painted on exactly as I had originally imagined it would: a stand out neon with lots of pigment!

With my base and the neon yellow, I have about five coats of polish on here, but I was able to achieve the desired look for just a few dollars. One tip I will give you if you are going to use the white base beauty cheat is to make sure the white base is flawless. This color is so sheer, every little flaw in the white will show through, so keep that white base nice and smooth.

As for the Spoiled line, the only thing I didn’t like about this polish was that the color initially came out of the bottle much more transparent than expected. Everything else lived up to Wet’n’Wild’s advertisement of the line. Spoiled goes on very smoothly, with a wide brush perfect for even coverage. It’s not a fast dry polish, but it wasn’t one of those super tacky polishes that gets messed up easily. Even with all those coats, I was able to play with my puppy after about fifteen or twenty minutes without smudging it (and she’s pretty furry).

Overall, for less than the price of a Starbucks coffee, I think Spoiled nail polish is a worthy buy, and if you’re into neons like I am, I recommend snatching up this vivid shade. If you’re not a fan of neons, they have a wide array of everything from pale to dark to glittery. I’ve already picked up a great deep burgundy shade called “I Don’t Drink Cheap Wine” which I am excited to try.

Has anyone else tried the Spoiled line? Comments welcome!

Happy painting!