Notd: Essie A crewed interest with glitter gradient

febbraio 27, 2013

Essie A crewed interest £8.99/€12 - 2 coats
The other day I was rummaging in my nail polish box and I discovered this little, still-untouched, gem. 
A crewed interest was part of the Essie 2012 spring collection but it's still pretty easy to find online, in fact I purchased mine for a ridiculous 2£ price tag during a sale a couple of months ago. 
It's a creamy neutral peach, very spring-ish and versatile. Definitely not a ground breaking color, but it's easy-to-wear and quite flattering since there's not too much white in it. What really makes it noteworthy tho is the brush. 
I've heard my fellow British bloggers swear by the new Essie brush before but this is the first time I got to try it. It's very similar to the Dior one - which is the best nail polish applicator I've ever tried -, just a bit more flexible and slightly squared. I expected a creamy nail polish such as this one to apply a little streaky but the brush made application easy and even in pretty much one coat. Essie was already one of my favorite nail polish brands but with the new brush is seriously making a bid for the top 3.
To spiced it up a little I added a bit of Nicole by OPI Disco dolls - a fine antique gold glitter mix with bigger rainbow accents - and a light sprinkle of MAC Gold glitter but it's a really lovely shade on its own.

Are you still rocking your favorite winter shades or you're feeling the need for some spring colors like I am?

***

On my wishlist this week #9

febbraio 14, 2013

Bored? Window shopping is the way...
wishlist10
Urban Decay 'OZ the great and powerful' Glinda palette // Hourglass Ambient lighting powder and Ambient brush // Sephora Pastel pop Color adapt blush // Clarins Ever matte shine control mineral powder compact // L'oreal Color riche caress aqua lip lacquer
001 I'm quite partial to anything inspired by the wonderful Wizard of Oz so it took me about five seconds to fall in love with this palette. I love the dreamy shades and the romantic hues, and I'm also glad UD finally dropped the mini primer potion/mini gloss thing and choose a full size Super saturated high gloss pencil to complement this palette instead, along with a mini 24/7 eyeliner. (If you're not familiar with the Super saturated glosses, I previously reviewed Lovechild here). The wicked witch version is really pretty too even if not so unique.

002 Oh I'm so excited about this release! The concept behind these powders is genius: Ambient lighting powders capture, diffuse and soften the way light is reflected on the skin, matter of factly faking the glow you get when different types of lighting hit our faces while blurring pores and imperfections. Like Photoshop in a compact form! There's one that fakes moonlight, one that looks like morning light, a powder that feigns the universal flatter of pink diffused lighting and so on and so forth. I really can't wait for them to be available in Europe and put my paws on at least one of these.

003 At first I thought all these 'I adapt to your ph' shades were a little naff, but the Dior Rosy glow blush changed my mind. Sephora recently came out with a whole collection of very promising products, the Pastel pop range, including a pink stick blush that promises a bonne mine effect unique for everyone. I haven't tried the Sephora makeup range in a while now and I'd be curious to see how it has improved during the years.

004 Clarins did it again! Inside this gorgeous gold compact there's apparently one of the best matte finishing powders on the market, infused with a skin detox technology and with a lovely velvety finish that doesn't look cakey no matter how many times you reapply during the day. I haven't heard a single bad thing about it since it was released and I'm literally itching to see if my fellow bloggers have gone to far on this.

005 Now that l'Oreal owns YSL as well, I look forward to trying their new products, especially the aqua lip lacquers inspired by the more expensive Glossy stains (review here). I've seen mixed reviews around and since I'm a big fan of the YSL formula I can't wait to try them myself.

What are you lusting on this week?

***

Notd: butter LONDON Tart with a heart

febbraio 12, 2013

butter LONDON Tart with a heart £12/€15 - 3 coats over 1 coat of nail foundation (here)
Tart with a heart is one of my favorite top coats. It's perfect on top of everything really, but I find that it complements nude polishes like nothing else (here I wore it on top of Essie Topless & barefoot). It's a gorgeous mix of pale gold, copper and rose gold microglitters - even some black ones here and there - and some bigger almost-holographic opalescent round glitters.
The glitter particles are a little sparse but it's mostly opaque in 3 coats. The formula is thin and easy to apply, and the glitters spread out nicely and without gapes. Unfortunately it's quite weak and chips easily but it could be the Nail foundation's fault.
Anyways I really like this glitter mix; I just need to find a way to make it more long-lasting and chip resistant. The golden-beige tones make it very subtle and elegant but when the light hits the nail the right way it's party time!

What are you wearing on your nails right now?

***

Review: LUSH Love lettuce fresh mask

febbraio 08, 2013

LUSH Love lettuce fresh mask* £5.95 /€9.25
When my skincare fever started and my face mask obsession took off, I set myself the target of trying all LUSH fresh face masks, some of the brand's most exciting products if you ask me. I simply love the idea of a wholesome, delicious-smelling mask waiting for me in the fridge at the end of a long day.
I already dipped my paws in the absolutely mouth-watering Oatfix in the past, and while it had been very hard not to mop it off with a spoon, I'm afraid it didn't really do anything for my skin. Bummer.
Anyways, I was planning to be patient and wait to collect 5 black pots to get the next mask for free when the lovely lady at the checkout dropped a full-size Love lettuce in my bag with a wink. Needless to say I was more excited for my freebie than for the purchased goodies. Fickle me.

Even if Love lettuce was originally created to give relief to normal to combination complexions, it worked just fine for my dry and slightly dehydrated skin. It's a mix of clay to deep clean the pores and absorb grease, honey and almond oil to moisturize the skin, crushed almonds to exfoliate and seaweed gel for a vitamin boost. And everything's topped with 100% pure French lavender to calm redness and balance the sebum production, while adding the most amazing, soothing fragrance to the mixture.
Marvellous scent aside, what I love the most of this scrub mask is the frankly alarming shade of green. It looks exactly like something I could do at home with a mixer and some leftover ingredients and needs to be paired with a soft robe, a couple of cucumber slices on the eyes and some relaxing music in the background.
Personally I don't rub the dried mix into my skin cause the almond bits are a little too big and harsh for my liking. Instead I simply remove the crust with muslin cloth and lukewarm water using a delicate touch. Love lettuce cleans the skin without stripping it too much and leaving it baby soft, while the lavender fights any redness that may be caused by the exfoliation.
It's definitely a mask I'll keep repurchasing when my skin needs a deep clean and a vitamin boost, but right now I can wait to try the next creamy goodness. Which one should I try next?

Have you tried any LUSH masks before? What's your favorite?

***

Now loving: MAC Tempting & Arena eyeshadows

febbraio 04, 2013

MAC Arena eyeshadow // MAC Tempting eyeshadow £10/€12.50 each
No matter how much I enjoy trying new products, I'm a creature of habit and tend to use the same products over and over and over for my everyday makeup. Every now and then I have to hide my Naked palettes and put something new in my makeup bag in order to actually use it.
Between my Urban decay palettes, the Smoky copper quad and the Effeto nudo quartet I've neglected my MAC eyeshadows for far too long lately, so I've invested in a cute little pro palette with two slots - which by the way is very convenient even if I haven't figured out how I'm going to extract the eyeshadow pans when I'll decide to switch shades yet - and filled it with two eyeshadows that deserved a little more love.

Arena is a soft golden peach eyeshadow with satin finish. It's really nice to use all over the lid as a wash of color for a subtle definition. The formula is soft and buttery but I wish it was a little more pigmented. I have to pack up a lot of color in order to achieve a full coverage base but it's a lovely shade nonetheless. Tempting is a bronzey gold medium brown with flecks of gold through it. Despite the lustre finish it applies well, with minimum fall outs. It's a very complex shade and looks good both blended in the crease for definition or from the lash line toward the crease for a gorgeous quick smoky eye. Arena and Tempting look also very good blended on top of each other and paired with a red lip (tutorial by Lucy Garrick here).
They're both very versatile and easy to tone down for a natural look or to intensify for bolder looks.

Since this tecnique was a hit I was thinking to switch shades every month, trying to introduce brighter colors in my daily routine and step out of my comfort zone a little more often as well.
What eyeshadows have you been loving recently?

***