Bargain Beauty Find! Revlon ColorBurst Lip Gloss in Bellini

Hello gentle readers.

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Gloss in Bellini is a soft, milky peach, semi-sheer highly shiny lip gloss that is the perfect slick it on nude lip on the run. Revlon claims that this gloss contains Elasticolor for rich color with weightless feel. There are moisturizers and anti-oxidants such as Vitamin E to condition and improve lip texture.

Contained in the long, sleek, rectangular tube is 0.2 fl oz of product. The retail price on the Walgreen's website is $ 7.49. I have seen it as high as ten clams in some drugstores in my area. Of course, I live in overpriced BFE. In my not so humble opinion, no drugstore lip gloss should cost that much. I mean, I can walk into a department store and buy a lippie for just a few dollars more. Mmm... Hmm.. Your price may vary, depending on what store you buy it from and what part of the country in which you reside. Shop BOGO sales, clip and download coupons for the best deals.

The delivery system is a long, soft, slightly plush applicator that picks up plenty of product then conforms to the shape of your lips to apply the product smoothly and evenly.

Swatch on the back of my hand under my OttLight. If you look carefully, you can see the tiniest bit of shimmer but you can't really see it on the lips. It just looks like a milky gloss.

On my lips. As you can see, this gloss is not super opaque. But it is very, very shiny. It is lightweight, silky-smooth, not sticky and feels very comfortable on my lips. It doesn't dry them out, either. A big, big plus, for my pucker! Wear time is not at all stellar. I need to reapply on a regular basis. Hey, it's lip gloss. I expect that with lip gloss, I don't ding it for requiring frequent touchups. 'Tis the nature if the beast. This gloss, being milky does settle into my lip lines, I find that pressing my lips together smooths that out and makes it look good, again.

I like Revlon ColorBurst Lip Gloss in Bellini. I reach for it every time I want a quick, easy, no-fuss nudeish lip. I like to apply a good waxy barrier pencil first, to keep this from migrating outside my lip line, because... Old broad. I very much like and use the one made by Milani.

Do you own Revlon ColorBurst Lip Gloss in Bellini? Do you own any other shades of this brand of gloss? What do you think of them? Please do share.

Thank you for swinging by and reading. Stay cool and have yourself a beautiful day!

Begin the Begin! Four Years of Blogging Calls for a Summer of Giveaways!

Hello gentle readers.


My blog is four years old. Four!

 Kinda hard to believe! Time files when you're having fun. And this blog is fun. I enjoy shopping for, trying, taking pictures of and writing about nail polish, beauty products and makeup. In the time this blog has been alive it has evolved slowly from a very beginner-ish couple days a week for me only kind of thing to... I think I may want to take this shizz to a next level concern.

But the time isn't right this minute. Right this minute, it is time for a giveaway to start celebrating! In fact, the celebration is going to go on all Summer long! That's right. From now until the first day of Autumn, I will be having pop up giveaways. It is the Summer of Giveaways. Some of the prizes will be polish, some... Who knows? They may be little, the giveaway may be fast and dirty. They may be a bit more substantial and the giveaway may run a little longer. It's all a tangled web.

This first one is The OPI Gwen Stefani Collection. Yep. The whole collection. When I featured this collection last Winter, it got a wonderful response and while it is technically a Fall/Winter collection it is gorgeous and full of polishes and sexy, fun finishes that can be worn year round.

I purchased this collection myself. The prize is, of course all brand new polishes! This giveaway will run for a month. All of the rules and so forth are in the Terms and Conditions on the Rafflecopter widget. Please read the Terms and Conditions carefully. I can not and will not be held responsible for entries that have to be disqualified because entrants failed to read the Terms and Conditions. You can find that feature at the bottom of the widget.

Please wait for the Rafflecopter widget to load fully then perform as many of the tasks it asks you to perform as you wish. There are only two mandatory tasks. The rest are voluntary and will help you rack up many, many entries. Yay! for many, many entries! I am just learning how to create the links in some... The wording is weird but the links work, just click them. Don't be afraid.

Okay, I'm going to release this one to the world, now. I hope that you enjoy entering and keep your eyes peeled...

Are you ready to get started?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I Love Nail Polish Mega: Review and Photographs with... Bonus Creatures!

Hello gentle readers.

I Love Nail Polish Mega is silver Holo-licious. The base is bright and shiny and the holographic effect is brilliant and well formed and colourful. This is good holographic stuff. My photograph doesn't even begin to do it justice.

I added creatures because I messed up the tip of one nail and I have wounds on my cuticles and nobody wants to see that! But everybody likes to see cute ladybugs and butterflies. PicMonkey. Pulled my ass out of the fire, again.

This is two coats of I Love Nail Polish Mega and Seche Vite. Now that I see the macro shots, I could have used a third to better smooth my ridges. I could swear, my nails looked fine, in person.

I suck.

Remember all of the raving I did over the formula on I Love Nail Polish Pixie Dust? Well this one is almost as biddable. Silver holos seem to be a bit more divalicious by nature. This polish wants just a wee bit more care upon application, appreciates being overworked just a bit less than her sisters. A swift, more deft hand is a good idea but you don't have to be afraid of this polish. Just don't treat it like your other ILNP holos or jellies. I had no trouble with streaking, running, pooling or flooding my cuticles. It did bubble on me. I believe that I was responsible for that, not the polish. I noticed a little separation from it having been sitting just before I applied and I agitated it a little more than I should have while rolling it, before I painted it on. Happily, Seche Vite can melt and smooth down a multitude of sins! This polish has fab dry time. And I do mean fab.

Wear time is pretty freaking impressive. I have had this one on my nails since Saturday and it still looks pretty decent. I have normal tip wear and one little chip. I'm removing it, later today as I am planning to try a different polish. But yeah... I am thrilled with the wear time. I am thrilled with I Love Nail Polish Mega.

What do you think of I Love Nail Polish Mega? Do you own it? If you do, you know that my photographs are falling short of the fabulous of the reality of this gorgeous stuff. If you don't own it and you'd like a bottle, clickity-click* and pick up a bottle of this gorgeous polish for your very own.

Today's Thursday, isn't it? Where the hell did this week go? I think it is flying by faster because my normal routine was interrupted by the holiday weekend. That must be it.

I am suffering a blogging crisis of sorts. I keep doing eye looks with my BFTE Coffee Collection shadows, taking pictures, editing them, writing posts, looking at the previews and hating what I did and deleting the whole sorry business and starting over. I have done this four times, now. I just want to do a post, show photographs and an eye look that justify the faith that Kimberly showed in me by sending me those beautiful shadows and I want to show them to their best advantage and make people really want them. But all I end up with are posts I want to delete.

Any of my fellow bloggers get stuck in this kind of suck spiral? *headdesk*

Okay, enough whining. I need another cup of coffee. May I offer you one, as well?

Wearing Wack Slacks to Nubbin Town

Hello gentle readers.

What do I get when I go on a tear, drag out the Comet, the cleaning supplies, the rags, sponges, the mop, vacuum and I scrub my house, from top to bottom, without gloves?

I get a sparkling clean house.

And I get jacked up nails and cuticles.

And I get nubbins.

Just when I think I have grown my nails back to my ideal swatching length, too. *sigh* Talk about self sabotage.

Cult Nails Wack Slacks is the perfect way to soothe and comfort raw, new nubbins. When I am forced to grind my nails down, I like to go deep, dark. Not only does a vampy polish look smashing on nubbins, it is a little mourning for what was. The loss of my longer, more graceful nails until they regenerate, once again.

***snort*** Drama queen much?

This manicure was one coat of Cult Nails Wack Slacks, a beautiful, dense, richly pigmented navy blue creme and Seche Vite to top it off. Yes, gentle reader. You read that read that right. One coat. Which was nice because after trimming away ripped up cuticle material (something I normally avoid, if I possibly can) acetone on my cleanup brush... OWIE! My cuticles are still healing and a little sensitive!

I am apologizing in advance for my photographs... As I said, I really jacked up my hands, nails and cuticles and they look pretty bad. At least the polish is beautiful.

Cult Nails Wack Slacks has a splendid formula, it is a perfect viscosity, firm but not thick, it flows easily off of the brush, sits down and cooperates without going nuts. There is no running, flooding, pooling, streaking, dragging or bubbling. I did have quite a bit of cleanup but that was because I was shaky and sloppy after a long day of hardcore housework fueled by a lot of caffeine and polishing new nubbins neatly wasn't happening. Like any blue polish, the pigments in this baby will grab and stain skin, especially skin that is in the least bit dry. And my skin was dry!

This polish dries quickly and shiny and beautiful. Top coat just enhances that and makes it even better. Wear time is respectable. I had this one on and looking good for three full days. I don't get fabulous wear out of most nail polishes, if I get four days, I am dancing in the streets. Yeah, just drink in that mental picture.

I like Cult Nails Wack Slacks. It is beautiful, the formula is fantastic and it is a One Coat Wonder for me. What more could a polish lover ask for? A link to where you can buy it*, perhaps? If you jump on the stick, Cult Nails is running a sale through the end of the month of May! Yep. You could get pretty blue pants or any other garments for your nails for 20% off! So get yourself over there and check out the pretty. Wack Slacks is a Limited Edition polish.

Did you know that Cult Nails polishes are not only gorgeous with a fabulous formula, they are 5 Free, cruelty free and vegan, as well? Cult Nails is a brand you can feel good about buying for yourself and as gifts for polish loving friends and family.

Do you own Cult Nails Wack Slacks? Other beautiful Cult Nails polishes? If you haven't, yet you can Join the Cult here*. It's a beautiful, colourful, fun cult, where there are no rules and your nails always look pretty.

Thank you so much for popping in and reading. Have a wonderful day and may your polish never bubble.

*Links Provided for the Convenience of My Gentle Readers. I Receive No Benefit if a Link is Clicked and a Purchase is Made. 

Sample Saturday! Benefit The POREfessional: Review

Hello gentle readers.

Today's Sample Saturday Review is Benefit the POREfessional PRO balm to minimize the appearance of pores. Here is the little sample packet, after I used it up. Of course, I forgot to photograph it, before I defiled it. Dur! Man! Even Benefit's sample packaging is cute! This was a little foil and plastic wrap lined paper pouch that contained a surprisingly generous amount of product. I used this sample for well over a week! Closer to two, if memory serves.

The full size is packaged in a plastic squeezie tube, contains 22.0 mL/ 0.75 US fl oz. The retail price is $31.00.

 Benefit claims that this primer will give the user the appearance of smoother than smooth skin and blur pores and fine lines and help makeup stay put. The formula is translucent and compliments all skin tones and is oil free and contains a Vitamin E derivative that is known to protect skin from free radical damage.

The POREfessional can be used both under or over makeup. Personally, I don't grok applying a primer over my makeup, that just doesn't sound like a plan but hey, if it works for some people, I say, go for it. You know me, I am all for let your beauty flag fly. Do your thing. If this stuff helps to mattify and smooth things back down mid day it may be worth a try. I don't really get oily, anymore (dried up old hag, here) so I didn't attempt that maneuver with this product when I was test driving this sample.

The primer it's self (moron, here forgot to take a picture of the product) is peach toned, light and silky smooth in texture but blends out to translucent and was invisible on my fair skin. The effect is a softening, a diffusing of the fine lines and wrinkles Mother Nature is blessing me with, as I march ever closer to decrepitude. One tender mercy I have been shown as I advance on my Big Five-O is that my once Lake Superior sized pores have miraculously become not so much of a problem. I suppose that She has decided that She is cutting me a break... Since She is carving ever more and deeper crags and cracks in my face and causing my jawline to sag like the neighborhood basset hound, She would take pity on me and ease up on my stinking pores. Thanks a lot, Girlfriend.

The POREfessional performed very well at it's main duty of locking down my foundation all day long. I would apply my makeup early, early in the morning, come back late at night and it was still there, going strong. Now, remember, I have very dry skin, and I was wearing a long wear foundation. Your results can vary, depending on your own skin type and the foundation or other face makeup you use. But I was damned impressed at how well this product works as a foundation primer. It is mattifying, which is something my dry skin doesn't particularly appreciate, as you can imagine. By the end of the day, my face felt pretty tight and somewhat uncomfortable.

Overall, Benefit The POREfessional is a very good product. It performs admirably at it's job. A little bit goes a long way, a full sized tube should last a long time so I would imagine it would be well worth the investment. All of that said, this product isn't for me, personally. It just doesn't jive with my skin. However, if you are not as dry as I am, I think that you might really like Benefit's The POREfessional and if you are looking for a high quality, good performing mid tier level primer, I encourage you to give it a whirl.

As for me, I am sticking with my Old Faithful. Or, I may pick up the Reviva Labs one.. I've read good things about it.

What say you about Benefit The POREfessional? Have you tried it? Is it a part of your arsenal? Do you love it? Was it a meh? Did you leave it? I'd love to hear what you think. If you have very dry skin, like myself and have recommendations for really great primers, hit me up, I'd love to hear about them!

Thank you so much for swinging by and reading and have a beautiful weekend!

OPI Strawberry Margarita

Hello gentle readers.

OPI Strawberry Margarita is a classic bright pink creme. Part of OPI's core line, this lovely polish should be a part of any pink lover's enamel arsenal.

This manicure was two coats and Seche Vite.

The formula on this polish is about as lovely as it gets. Smooth and biddable, it flows off the Pro-Wide brush and settles in where you want it to then just loves your nails without streaking, dragging, running, pooling, flooding your cuticles or bubbling. This polish is easy to control and doesn't require a lot of cleanup. Unless you are, like me, a sloppy polisher. Yeah... It's true. Even after all of these years of blogging, I am still a bit of a polish slopper! If it weren't for acetone and my cleanup brush, my photographs would look very different! *sigh* I get good wear time, (for me) from this polish. I wore Strawberry Margarita for five days before it fell apart on me. Not too shabby.

I'm playing around with new posing. I don't know what I think of this. It feels a little... Finger-y. I don't know. I just know that I am a bit bored with the old tried and true. I'll keep playing with it and see if I hit on something that is brilliant. Maybe a new background colour. Not that I usually have much background showing... I don't know...

I am not happy with this blog, right now. It needs to evolve. The times, they are gonna be a changing. I will let you know, I won't spring it on you without warning.

What do you think of OPI Strawberry Margarita? If you are a pink fan, are you loving this one? Do you own it? Wear it often? If you would like to own it, you can grab it wherever you buy OPI polishes.

Thank you for popping in and reading. Have a lovely day and may your polish never bubble.

I Love Nail Polish Pixie Dust: Review

Hello gentle readers.

Has it really been that long since my last post? I would have liked to be here, sooner but it has been a hard, sad time around here. My father in law passed away and I have been helping my grieving husband and son and mother in law get through this.

It is time to get back to normal. Again. I don't want to sound like a whiner, here. I just... Need a break, please.

Okay. I Love Nail Polish Pixie Dust is a light lavender base with their Ultra Holo linear rainbow goodness all over your nails. So beautiful

This is two coats under two coats of Posche Top Coat. Feast your eyes:

The formula on this polish is gorgeous. It flows off of the wide brush so smoothly, so easily, it sits sweetly down where it is placed, sweeps up the nail and doesn't run, pool, streak, drag or bubble. Dry time is really good, made better by a good quick dry top coat. The holo will shatter temporarily, don't freak out. It'll come back together in perfect rainbows as the top coat dries.

Funny thing, this polish seems to crave two coats of top coat. I applied just one and had a chip, the next day. Rats! I didn't have time to reapply a new mani... I had an appointment and had to get my ass out the door. So I just fixed the chip and applied a second coat of top coat to all ten nails. And that mani lasted me a full four more days. Six days. I had tip wear, but no chips. Until I did a Doctor Destructo on my mani and my nails and my cuticles. I am now in nubbins and a dark blue polish. That's another post for another day.

This polish, this I Love Nail Polish Pixie Dust is so special and pretty and you really should get you a bottle of it because you need a bottle of it. Linkage in case you're craving. (Just for your convenience. I don't gain from you clicking.)

What do you think of I Love Nail Polish Pixie Dust? Do you own this polish? Do you love it? Please do tell.

If I have any readers left, Thank you so much for coming by and... Reading. Have a lovely day and may your polish never bubble.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light: Review

*This post contains an affiliate link. Other links are provided for the convenience of my gentle readers.

Hello gentle readers.

I know. The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders have been out for forever, they have been reviewed by anyone who matters and are now practically a cult favorite product. So what the hell do I think I'm doing, posting a review on such a well known product?

Well, I just recently bought my first Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder. I picked it up during the recent Sephora VIB/Beauty Insider discount promo. I had been wanting to try this powder since it launched but could never really justify the splurge until I had a little extra money lying around and a discount, too.

What Hourglass has to say (From their website):

A wardrobe of six universal finishing powders that recreate the most exquisitely flattering light - from ethereal moonlight to luminous candlelight. Each powder captures, diffuses and softens surrounding light with groundbreaking photoluminescent technology. Choose one of more and step into your perfect light. 

  • Powders capture, diffuse and soften the way light is reflected on skin, brighten the appearance and conceal skin imperfections, pores and wrinkles.
  • Infused with technologically advanced soft focus particles that help make skin appear younger, even - toned and radiant.
  • Unlike traditional powders that use opaque pigments, Ambient utilizes "photoluminescent technology" - micron-sized spherical particles that refract light and create transparent coverage.
  • Universal powders make them suitable for every skin tone, while each can be worn for day and night.
  • Free of parabens, talc, fragrance, nano-particles and gluten.
  • DIM LIGHT (the shade I chose) is a neutral peach beige powder that blurs imperfections and highlights a radiant complexion with the perfect balance of warm and cool tones.

Gentle reader, those are some lofty claims! Does the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder live up to them? Let's see.

Why don't we begin with the packaging? It is, in a word, luxe. The dark bronze square plastic compact is sleek, rounded and smooth. It feels weighty without being heavy and just holding it in the hands is a pleasure. The finish is a unique, highly polished almost mirror finish. This compact was a bear for me to photograph! I am not a skilled photographer and I don't own the equipment or know how necessary to perfectly, accurately show this gorgeous thing properly in photographs. Since most of you have no doubt at least seen the packaging, you know what I am talking about.

The compact is truly beautiful. It is highly reflective and the unique colour makes this a beautiful object to look at and to have sitting out on my dressing table. It is lovely to handle, just the *snap!* it makes when you close it is satisfyingly strong and crisp. It is rather like closing the door of a really great car. There is nothing tinny or lightweight about it.

Open this package and inside is a large mirror in the lid and a domed, square cake of pressed powder.

This is Dim Light, it is a soft peachy-beige that is lightly marbled with lighter, brighter veins. This powder looks a bit dark, especially for we paler skinned humans but Dim Light is the perfect shade for my fair not porcelain, neutral toned complexion.

The surface of the powder provides a beautiful tactile experience. The softly domed cake is very smooth and silky; as you run a finger over it there is no graininess, no rough areas to catch the skin or jar the spirit.

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder cake, it's self is very soft and care needs to be taken in transport and use not to break it. I have seen people lament their broken Ambient Lighting Powder after dropping it or letting it be jogged around in their handbag so I don't carry this powder with me when I am out and about. I would love to but I don't want to risk breaking it. You know... Hourglass should make a touch up compact, a mini, extra rugged, cushioned compact that can be popped into a bag or backpack or carry on that would protect the little powder cake inside and would be refillable. Aw, who am I kidding? As if. I need to stop trying to design makeup and just get on with this review.

Now, Hourglass recommends that we use their Ambient Powder Brush to apply this powder to the skin. Uh... At $35.00 on top of the $45.00 investment I was making just for the powder? Nope. Sorry. Can't do that. I'd love to but my budget won't stand for it and besides, I own lovely, soft synthetic brushes that I figured would do the trick.

I use the Real Techniques Blush Brush to apply my Ambient Lighting Powder. The soft, synthetic bristles pick up just the right amount of product, not too much or too little, then sweeps it onto my skin, gently buffing the powder into the foundation or CC cream I am wearing without disturbing my makeup.

The finish is dreamy. As this powder is applied, there is a silent sigh as it it morphs into my skin and smooths away the appearance of uneven tone and texture. My skin suddenly looks softer, smoother, almost silky. My complexion looks balanced, brightened and slightly warmed by the peach tones in the powder, making me look more awake and refreshed. To my eye, my fine lines and wrinkles do appear diffused, softened. Pores are not as visible. My foundation is set without looking cakey or heavy. I have dry skin so I rarely need to touch this up, the finish lasts pretty much all day, for me. We'll see how it holds up to a long day as the Arizona Summer heat settles in. I suspect it is going to do just fine.

As you can see in this swatch, the powder has softened and blurred the wrinkled, old hag aspect of the back of my hand and added a subtle luminescence. This powder gives a very faint glow, not shimmer or real radiance, just enough light bounce to enhance, not turn one into a disco ball.

Below are two face shots, the top one was taken with me wearing a typical setting powder. In this case, the Revlon ColorStay pressed powder. It is a perfectly good setting powder, finely milled, soft and smooth. The pigments are quite opaque and, while I apply my powder with a light hand, this powder did leave me a little cakey and paled out. I know... Old broads aren't supposed to wear powder. I am an old school old broad and I use powder. Just a little to set and finish. Always have, always will. I just don't like the feel of foundation/CC cream without it. So there!

The secret to old broads rocking powder is to find the right powder! In the photograph below, my foundation is set with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder. There is a pretty clear difference. My skin looks smoother, less cakey. My fine lines and deeper wrinkles are diffused and less apparent. No, this powder won't give you a face lift or take twenty years off of your face (unfortunately!) but in my opinion, this powder makes me look... Better. Maybe a teeny bit younger. Add to that the fact that it sets and locks down my makeup all day long and we have a winner. A big one!

And, we also have a problem. A big one! I love, love, love this powder but I don't love, love, love the price tag. The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder retails for $45.00. That is pretty spendy for a girl on a budget. Shopping for it when Sephora is running their now and again discount promotions makes it a little more affordable for me. As expensive as this powder is, I feel that it is well worth the price and, when this runs low and I have another delicious little discount, I will be re purchasing. I just hope that my current compact holds out until then! This is a product I really don't want to be without. If I get a little extra moolah, I wouldn't mind treating myself to another shade or maybe the three powder palette.

If you haven't yet and would like to try the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder, you can find it on the Hourglass website and in Sephora stores and on Sephora's website. I suggest that if you live near a Sephora store that you go in and play with the testers. Swatch the various shades and feel it out before you commit to purchasing a shade. I went in thinking I would want Diffused Light and I walked out with Dim Light. And Dim Light is definitely the right choice for me.

Do you own this powder? What do you think of it? Love it? Is it a "meh" for you? Please do tell, I'd like to hear your experience with this product.

Thank you so much for coming by and reading. If you got through this entire loooong post without falling asleep, I salute you. Take care and have a beautiful day.

*This post contains an affiliate link. Other links are provided for the convenience of my gentle readers.

All Hail the Beauty Blender! Review, Photographs, Guide to Care and Feeding

*This post contains affiliate links.

Hello gentle readers.

For several months, now, I have been using a Beauty Blender to apply my foundation or CC cream and I have to say, what the hell took me so long to try and get into using this marvelous little pink sponge? If you aren't familiar with the Beauty Blender, it is a small, teardrop shaped latex free synthetic sponge created especially for the application of foundation, BB and CC creams and concealer/corrector products. The Beauty Blender can also be used to apply powder and powder foundations.

I like to  switch between using this sponge or a synthetic brush, depending on the product and the finish I am going for. In my opinion, no one tool is perfect for every product, we need to experiment and use what works best for us with each product.

The Beauty Blender arrives to you in a little plastic canister with an inner gasketed disk insert that holds the Beauty Blender almost magically suspended, floating in it's packaging. When you open the package and pull the Beauty Blender from the disk, you will have in your hand a small, dense teardrop shaped dry sponge and you might think, "Really? I'm supposed to put my face makeup on with this?" Yep. you sure are!

Before you use a Beauty Blender for the first time, you need to take your new sponge to the sink and drench it in warm water. I always wash my Beauty Blenders with a little soap and rinse thoroughly before I use them for the first time. I don't know if it is really necessary, I do believe that the sponge is clean and ready to go but I am weird like that. Once the sponge is drenched in water, you will notice it has expanded a great deal and become much softer. Squeeze out the excess water and you have a Beauty Blender, all set to use.

Beauty blenders, one is dry, the other after being drenched in warm water and squeezed out. See the difference?

Using the Beauty Blender couldn't be easier. Dot your foundation or BB/CC cream onto your face then, using the rounded, blunt end, gently bounce the sponge through the makeup and all over your face, spreading and setting it into place as you go. The damp sponge is very springy and not at all uncomfortable as it boings its way all over your face. Your makeup will settle into place quickly and nearly effortlessly. The bouncing action and the softly textured surface of the Beauty Blender create a smooth, skin like finish free of streaks or brush marks.

For areas around the nose and eyes and for applying and blending corrector and concealer around your eyes or to do a pinpoint application of concealer on the face to cover blemishes and small areas that need additional coverage, simply turn the Beauty Blender over and use the tip or side of the pointed end. The sponge can be rolled across the face or the wide side surface can be used to further smooth the larger planes of the face or down your throat to blend the edges. This sponge can also be used as a powder puff, once your makeup is in place.

Care and feeding of your Beauty Blender couldn't be simpler. After use, just drench it in nice, warm water and add a little cleanser, liquid hand soap or my favorite, Dawn dish detergent (I have found that this is the best cleanser for my Beauty Blenders, it is cheap and breaks down and gets the gunk out of my sponges like nothing else, even those fancy, expensive specialty cleansers) to the sponge. Squeeze it, with the tip in the fingers, the rounded bottom on the thumb, over and over to clean out the makeup, concealer and powder. When washing your sponge, squeeze firmly but don't get too rough with it. A wet Beauty Blender can tear if you go after it with too much force. (Ask me how I decapitated my first one. :P) Now, rinse, rinse, rinse, squeezing the clear water through the sponge to get the detergent out. If the sponge isn't yet clean, just add a little more detergent and repeat. Once the detergent is thoroughly rinsed out, squeeze well and set the Beauty Blender on a clean surface to dry.

You will see some dye runoff as you wash your Beauty Blender and it will fade a bit, over time. This is normal and doesn't effect the performance of the sponge in the least.

If you are like me and you really need to not only clean but sanitize your beauty tools, especially sponges, sanitizing your Beauty Blender couldn't be simpler. I use a couple of different methods, both very effective. Method one: Pour about half a cup or so of 91% rubbing alcohol into a dish, fully saturate the freshly washed Beauty Blender in the alcohol, squeezing it through to be sure that the alcohol gets deep into the sponge then squeeze out the alcohol and set the Beauty Blender on a clean surface to dry. The alcohol scent will dissipate as the sponge dries and by the time you are ready to wet and use it, again, will just smell like a clean Beauty Blender.

Method two: After washing your Beauty Blender, place your saturated sponge in a microwave safe bowl with enough water to about halfway cover it and set it in the middle of your microwave. Cook on high for about forty-five seconds, increasing the time for lower wattage microwaves. Mine is an 1100 watt, just for reference. Remove the bowl from the microwave (use a pot holder, the bowl will be hot!) and set aside to cool. Once the water and sponge have cooled enough to be safely handled, squeeze out the excess water and set your Beauty Blender on a clean surface to dry.

Do not, under any circumstances use bleach to clean and sanitize your Beauty Blender! You will destroy it. Guess how I know this? Mmm-Hmmm...

I really dig my Beauty Blenders. They work like a charm, give a beautiful finish and wash up easily and can be sanitized so that they don't turn into a nasty cesspool of bacterial infection and honk. If I have one tiny gripe about the sponges, it is that, in spite of my almost obsessive cleaning and sanitizing, these sponges do stain. There is no getting around it. *sigh* Oh well. I can live with it. I think... The Beauty Blender, with proper care and feeding will last quite a long time. After rather swiftly murdering my first one by being a bit too hard on it and using bleach to try to sanitize it, I have learned how to handle and clean them to maximize their lifespan.

Do you use the Beauty Blender? Do you love it? Did you leave it? Please do tell.

Thank you for coming in and reading and have a great day.

*This post contains affiliate links.

It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Vol. 1 Matte Luxe Transforming Eye Shadow Palette: Swatches, Review, Photographs and Eye Look

Hello gentle readers.

The It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Vol. 1 Matte Luxe Transforming Eye Shadow Palette (that name is a mouthful!) is a newer offering by It Cosmetics. Some of the claims made by It Cosmetics about this eye shadow formula are: With hydrating age reverse and prevent complex infused with peptides, hydrolized collagen, silk, anti-oxidants and Drops of Light Technology. This palette is cruelty free and paraben free, too.

The product net weights are: 1.82 g  0.064 oz. 0.8 g 0.028 oz. x 14. This palette retails for $42.00 and you can find it on the Ulta website and in store and on the It Cosmetics website. You can also find it on QVC's Website.*

It Cosmetics says that these shadows can be worn wet or dry, as a shadow or liner. They can be worn matte or combined with the Transforming Pearl shadow to create a shimmery pearl shade.

I say: Wow! The shadows in this palette are fantastic. Exquisitely soft, velvety smooth, these shadows are all pigmented and have very good colour payoff. These shadows apply easily and blend out like a dream. These eye shadows wear without fading or creasing all day over primer for me. As with any makeup product, YMMV but I'm willing to bet that if you use a primer, add a base, if you feel it is necessary, these shadows will perform beautifully for you, too.

Let's have a look at this palette and it's packaging. Starting with the packaging: I have to admit, this is not my favorite packaging, ever. The slim, rectangular paperboard case is lightly padded and covered in a soft, velvety mauve-pink fabric. The name of the palette is printed on the top in gold lettering. This palette is pretty to look at but that fabric covering drives me insane. I am nearly fanatical about keeping my makeup clean and tidy and keeping this palette in that condition requires that I keep it in it's outer box. Yeah, I know...

The It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Palette (I am shortening the name for the rest of this review because typing out the full name over and over? Not going to happen.) has a fold over, strongly magnetized flap in the front that keeps the palette securely closed. It opens easily then snaps back into place when it is closed. The palette can be picked up and handled without it falling open.

Inside, the palette is trimmed out in shiny gold paper, there is a good sized mirror in the lid. There are fourteen pans of matte shadows and one larger pan of the Transforming Pearl shadow. This shadow can be used to transform and shimmer up the matte shadows. It is also kind of pretty as a cheek bone highlight. All of the shadows have their name clearly printed under each pan.

A closer look at the eye shadows. Look at all of the rich, neutral colours along with a few fun shades like purple and blue. Each of the pans is embossed with a raised It in the company's trademark logo. Don't you just want to reach through your screen and touch the soft, velvety shadows?

Swatch fest! I swatched these on the inside of my arm, over a light application of primer.

Let's run them down.

  • Sheer Joy: A soft cream ivory. This is a little more sheer than the others, only by comparison.  
  • Soft Light: Light taupe. 
  • Warmth: Light tan. 
  • Soulful: Sweet cocoa rose.
  • Mocha: Medium, slightly greyed down brown.
  • Violet: Dusky medium purple.
  • Midnight: Dirty navy blue. 
  • Noir: Black true black. Slightly streaky, but blends to smooth yummy. 
  • Love: Slightly dusty pale cream pink.
  • Sunrise: Golden tan. 
  • Sunset: (Earworm alert! #sorrynotsorry) The colour of the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. 
  • All Heart: Dusty lavender-taupe.
  • Java: Yeah! Two shades named for my all consuming obsession! Rich, warm brown.
  • Iconic: Charcoal grey. A tad patchy but blendable to perfect. 
  • Transforming Pearl: Radiant cream. Slightly sheer but buildable. Did I mention that this shadow can double as a face highlight? It can. It's just that good. 

The It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty palette can give looks that range from soft and subtle to deep, smokey drama and just about everything in between. This is one fantastic neutral palette. It is wonderful on it's own, it will work with shimmery neutrals and brights from other palettes. I have mixed these with many of my other shadows and palettes Completely, beautifully versatile and, dare I say, indispensable.

Here is a quick, soft eye look I created on a day when I wanted to be polished but keep it soft and low key.

I started with Lorac Behind the Scenes eye primer than laid down a little Maybelline Matte Color Tattoo  in Nude Pink. Love all over my lid, Soft Light in my crease, Warmth to blend up my orbital bone and transition to my brow highlight. Sheer Joy on my brow bone and inner corner. A little Transforming Pearl on my lower lash line from inner corner to about a third of the way. Love the rest of the way to the outer corner. Upper lids lined with Stila Smudge Stick in Angelfish. Benefit They're Real mascara, one generous coat on my upper lashes. Brows are Anastasia Brow Wiz in Medium Ash.

I heartily recommend the It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Vol. 1 Matte Luxe Transforming Eye Shadow Palette. Do you own this beautiful palette? What do you think of it? If you like neutral shadows and a bit of glam fun, too this palette may be just what you need. So, what are you waiting for? Click one of the links I provided earlier in this post and get yourself one.

This palette is called Volume One. Can we assume there are more to come? Because that would be great. Especially if they are as lovely as this one!

Thank you so much for swinging by and reading my review. I hope that you found it helpful and enabling. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. I'll answer as quickly as I possibly can. Take care and have a beautiful day!

*Links are provided solely for the convenience of my gentle readers. I receive no payment or other benefit if a link is clicked and a purchase is made.

OPI Amazon... Amazoff: Swatch and Review

Hello gentle readers.

I wrap up my reviews of the OPI Brazil Collection for Spring/Summer 2014 with the incomparable Amazon... Amazoff. This deep teal green jelly kind of blew my mind. This polish is so... so...

Yeah. Mind blown.

OPI Amazon... Amazoff is richly pigmented, squishy, mad, mad shiny. All of the stuff I like in a great nail polish. OPI makes some damned fine nail lacquer, this is one of their finest.

This swatch is two coats and Seche Vite.

The formula on this polish is sick. Smooth, silky, perfect viscosity, this polish flows off of the brush, sits sweetly down where it is placed and self levels like a dream. There is a bit of the streakies on the first coat then by the time the second slicks it's self into place, all is smooth, opaque perfection. While a top coat isn't technically necessary, this polish is shiny and smooth on it's own; a good quick dry top coat gets this ready to roll faster, better than on it's own.

If you like green polish, you need OPI Amazon... Amazoff. If you would like to own it, you should be able to find it where OPI is sold. I was recently in my local Sally Beauty Supply and saw a couple of bottles there. While this polish is limited edition for the Spring/Summer season, it is not hard to find so go get yourself a bottle.

What do you think of OPI Amazon... Amazoff? Are you as enamored of this crazy beautiful polish as I am? Please tell me what you think.

Thank you so much for coming by and reading. Have a terrific day and may your polish never bubble.

OPI Where Di Suzi's Man-Go? Swatch and Review

Hello gentle readers.

Just a quickie, today. I have a busy day ahead of me and this post is going up late courtesy of the headbanger that prevented me from thinking coherently, last night.

OPI Where Did Suzi's Man-Go? (If she needs one, she can have mine... He's on my shit list at the moment.) from the Brazil Collection for Spring/Summer 2014 is a sweet, Dreamsicle orange crelly. Oh, this is pretty. And mad, stupid shiny, too. I love this polish and have worn it a couple of times, already. If I have one teeny tiny gripe about it, it is a little on the translucent side. I have to apply three coats. I needed a fourth on my ring nail to perfectly smooth out my ridges.

I think it is time for me to look into good, ridge filling base coats. This multiple coats to cover my ridges nonsense is getting old.

This swatch is three coats, I popped a fourth on, which I wouldn't bother with if I were just wearing it, for these photographs to best showcase the pretty. Seche Vite tops it, of course.

Can you stand it?

The formula on this polish is really great. Except for it being a little translucent (which gives it that beautiful, somewhat squishy quality) it applies smoothly and easily. I didn't have any trouble with dragging, running, pooling or bubbling. It was a tad streaky until I got that third coat on. I don't mind applying three coats when application is so easy and I don't have to spend all day at it. Dry time isn't bad with a good fast dry top coat.

Wear time is about OPI average for me. I can get a good three or four days out of this one. Remember that YMMV when it comes to wear time.

What do you think of OPI Where Did Suzi's Man-Go? (Seriously, girl, call me! I can hook you up.) Do you love a great, creamy orange crelly? If so, this one may be just what you are looking for. It is in stores now. Check Ulta, their website, Sally Beauty Supply and their website, JC Penny salons as well as other local retailers, beauty supplies and salons that carry OPI in your area.

Thank you so much for popping in and reading. Have a great day and may your polish never bubble.