Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Thursday Post

Natalie Merchant: My Skin. Haunting, delicate, beautiful.

Quinoa patties. Gotta try.

Sexy cars.

OMG the dog's plate is so cute...and makes me feel bad that I didn't do something that cool for Dennison. :(

I want to try all of these eye looks. Or maybe just have Wandz do them :P

PASTELSSSSS. I know they're polarizing (hate 'em or LOVE 'EM), and can see where I fall.
LOL I nearly died. S. collapsed on the bed and Dennison hopped on him, pinned him down, and proceeded to vigorously lick his hand. It was hilarious, because Dennison is not one of those exuberant slobbery lick-lick-lick dogs. I think S had been snacking on something...LOL.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Another Gift Idea: Tarina Tarantino Emerald Pretty Palette

If these aren't all gone, you should grab one and give it to someone you like. I bought mine during the VIB sale; it was already on sale and that was doubly awesome. The shadows cover a nice range of colors without being too bright, and they all go together in fun ways. I don't like the packaging and am tempted to try my first depotting project (S said he'd help) but then I need to get a palette and I can't be bothered.
Tarina Tarantino Emerald Pretty Palette.

However, like the ones in the other Tarina Tarantino palette I have, these shadows are soft and easy to use, blendable, and pigmented. The formula is fantastic and I hope the line makes more colors and fabulous palettes in the future.
L-R, under Ottlite, no primer: Glinda's Kiss, Silver Shoes, Dandy Lion, Saw Dust Heart, Ozma, Very Wicked

Natural light, same order. You can see that some have a sheen in certain lights, and also a slight duochrome effect. They're pretty.
Also, I have to say, I have a soft spot for The Wizard of Oz and the other Oz stories. I read them all countless times as a child (though some books in the series are better than others, naturally) and I hope the new movie that's coming out doesn't suck (love Mila Kunis, can't much stand James Franco...I'm sure we can work it out). The whole world is really magical, and complex, and one of my favorite childhood landscapes, hands down.

I don't know that this palette is bright and wild enough to reflect my memories of the Land of Oz, but I respect the effort. I'll try to bring you some EOTDs, but I've been feeling rather blah lately, and just slap on some brown shadow or other and call it a day.

(Lastly, this brings me to another reason why I love Seattle: it's the Emerald City).

Monday, November 26, 2012

NARS Mascate: Redux

Since this is one of my favorite lipsticks - ever - I decided it was time to update the swatch. Also, I thought I'd remind people that it is an awesome lipstick, and perfect for the season. Vampy, red, glorious. And matte. I love matte finishes. They just seem so clean and soft and...I love 'em.
Glorious, matte red.
This is NARS Mascate. The original review is here, and I still love it every bit as much. It just makes me feel all super-model, you know?
I...don't remember what the rest of the makeup is. LOL. The blush is MAC Early Morning, though, I think.
What's your super-model lipstick? Also, look: TWINSIES. Dani is so glam :)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Trying Something New: A Wantable Box

I was contacted and offered a chance to try a Wantable box*. The idea is that you can create a profile, answering some basic questions about style and physical appearance, and then you get a personalized box. It's not a subscription box - you can just buy one to try out some new brands, or gift it to others. I think the boxes change every season, so you can try it out multiple times if you see sets that you like. They also offer free shipping both ways, which is nice to see.
All of the products in the "Eco-Tones Fire" Wantable box.

I actually got a different assessment when I filled out the questionnaire, but I ended up scrolling through and picking the "Boho Beauty" profile, because it seemed to come with more "natural" products, which generally means more paraben-free options. The website gives you a list of the products that are available in each box, so I was able to look up the websites and ingredient lists. Unfortunately, I thought the MiA BelleZZa blush was paraben-free and it isn't, so I didn't swatch that one for you. The rest of them are, though!
The box comes with a face chart as well as a separate itemized list of products and their retail prices. It also comes with an additional sheet that provides a description of each product and how to use it. I appreciate the detail that went into this - you get information on exactly what is in your box, down to the specific color.
I added up the prices of the individual prices = $84.69. The box is $40, so it is a deal compared to buying each product separately. I will say that I've never heard of some of these brands, but all of them have working, legitimate websites, and of course, I'm not suggesting that I am aware of every awesome brand on the planet. It was nice to see brands I've never heard of before, but it would also have been nice to see more brands that I recognized included, as well.
Lavera Organic Lip Gloss Magic Red #3, Lavera Soft Eyeliner in Brown, Benecos Natural Baked Eyeshadow in Mokka, Swagger Cosmetics Highlighter in Champagne in the Bubble Bath.

I wasn't impressed with the quality of the Benecos baked shadow - it was quite patchy, and even when I used it wet, I had to pack it on to get the pretty rose-gold shade to show up. It does contribute to a natural look, though. The Lavera eyeliner is dark enough in one pass, though it does have to be warmed up a bit before use (breathing on it helps - very high tech). I was surprised by how much I actually liked using brown eyeliner on its own. The Swagger Cosmetics highlighting powder is really lovely, even if it is a loose powder, and I've been using it daily to add a bit of glow to cheekbones as well as on the inner corner of my eyes. I like that it's a white-gold shade. The Lavera lip gloss is really sheer - not really what I expected of "Magic Red #3," but it's organic, if that makes you happy. It smells a bit "organic". Not my favorite.
Ignore that rebellious strand of hair.
This is a FOTD using all of the products (except the blush - I used MAC
Early Morning instead). It actually comes together for a nice, natural look, which is what face chart intends. In that respect, it succeeds.
Other products  used:  Annabelle BB Compact Makeup, MUFE Aqua Brow #25, Bobbi Brown Corrector in
Peach, Smashbox High Definition Concealer in Light
Overall, I'd say that I do like the idea behind the Wantable boxes - a coordinated set of items that you can purchase just once if you'd like, to try out a "new look." However, I did find some of the items in this season's box to be . I'd be interested to see what kind of brands and products they put together in future boxes, though, so I'll keep an eye on the site and their blog.

What do you think of the Wantable concept? Is it "Wantable?"

*Items were sent by PR for review purposes.

Friday, November 23, 2012

A Handful of Lipsticks from Marcelle

Okay, this post has been a long time coming, but it takes a while to swatch lipsticks, okay? And now you Canadian readers can maybe see which ones you'd like to throw in gift bags or stockings for the holidays. See? There was a master plan. *cough*
I like Marcelle's Rouge Xpressions a lot. So much, that I bought five of them when I was in Vancouver. Tracy gave me Amour a while ago (a fabulous red), and I picked up Cleopatra, Delirium, Enchantment, Jezebel, and Passion. (Ahahaha, for some reason, I spelled "Delirium" wrong for the rest of the post...sorry).
Sorry, forgot to swatch Amour on my arm.

Aside from that, these are creamy, comfortable to wear, fairly long wearing (better wear with the darker shades, naturally) and taste- and scent-free. They are also paraben-free. And $12 CAD. To give you a benchmark: I like them better than any other drugstore lipstick I've tried, and better than most MAC formulas. Amour can feather a bit, but I think it's because it's extra emollient - a lipliner will take care of that easily.
Top, L-R: Enchantment, Jezebel, Delerium
Bottom, L-R: Passion, Cleopatra, Amour

I don't know how people do more than one lip swatch at a time...after doing all of these I could no longer feel my face. Just saying. The things I do for you. And now: more photos of my face than anyone needs.
Enchantment: nude-ish "cream". Wish it were slightly less pink, but it's a nice shade. 
Jezebel: Dark pink "cream." Can make me look dead if I'm not careful, but it's a great vampy shade.  One of my favorites.
Delerium: Orange-red "pearl". Bit of a metallic sheen.
Passion: Reddish-brown "pearl." I guess that means: lightly metallic finish. Still nice. Festive.
Cleopatra: Bright fuchsia "cream." Fabulous and bright - perfect summer shade!
Amour: Fabulous blue-red "cream." Amazing pigmentation.
As I said, the formula on all of these is amazing - they're super comfortable to wear, and they come in a nice range of shades. I'd definitely recommend them! For those in the US, you can shop online here, with free shipping over $50 (that's what, four-ish lipsticks? Yeah. Do it.). If you need more convincing, see Rae, Arianne, Xiao. And then just try to resist.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Thursday Post

Selah Sue: Fyah Fyah. I love this album - she is amazing. This song is also smoking hot.

It's my birthday, today. I wish we were celebrating by going to one of these amazing spas. Ah, well. Someday. A girl can dream, right?

Raccoons kind of freak me out (they shuffle. Like zombies), but if you have a minute, you must watch this video. It is hilarious. Although if I saw a raccoon coming through a doggie door in my house, I would probably freak the hell out.

These portraits are adorable.

A fun read, especially since I like many of these actresses.

This is probably me. I saw a house with Christmas lights on it already and it made me really grumpy.
D'aw. So lazy.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Empties + Rejects, V10

Here we go again! There are so many empties this month! It definitely goes in cycles - sometimes I have a lot of things, sometimes I can just barely scrounge up a used sample packet. Hahaha. And it's not like I make a concerted effort to finish most products! Only if they suck. And sometimes I just toss them at that point. LIFE IS TOO SHORT FOR THINGS THAT SUCK. The end.


Clinique Super City Block SPF 40
I've gone through countless tubes of these. I picked up another one at the CCO a couple of months ago for $4 off, which made me happy. I have been thinking about switching to another facial sunscreen - one that contains only physical sunscreens - but the quest seems daunting right now. When my new tube starts to run low, I'll start trying new things out. Do you have a favorite facial sunscreen? I prefer one separate from my moisturizer.

The Body Shop Aloe Toner
Alcohol-free and recommended by the Reductionista. Gentle, non-drying, does a good job at removing any traces of anything that might be left over from a cleanse. Already repurchased, though it comes in a new bottle now; it's a slightly harder plastic and I preferred the old one - easier to squeeze.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment SPF 15
My second tube this year. I have two mini ones to go through now (Sephora birthday gift, woohoo!). I've decided that the mini ones don't fit my lips well and seem fragile, so I think I will keep buying the regular ones. Maybe I'll even branch out to different colors. Whoa. Wild.

Solstice Scents Root Beer Whipped Soap
This jar lasted way longer than I expected it to (I opened it at the beginning of August) and it was delightful to the last bit. Definitely getting more SS whipped soaps. I have one more (in a summer scent...isn't it annoying how that works out?) but I'll be sure to snap up some of their winter goodies! I'm trying a Yule whipped soap from Haus of Gloi right now, though!

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream
I love this stuff. Good for use on the face and the body. I use it during the cold months on my feet, because they get really dry. I also use it on my face (under eyes at night, on cheeks when I have too much redness). It's really fabulous. I bought a set from Sephora with all kinds of FAB goodies in it, including another tub of this stuff. This is the exception to my "no stuff in tubs" rule.

Alchemic Muse Vanilla Bourbon Foaming Body Scrub
As I mentioned in my review, this isn't my favorite scent. I do really like the scrub, though - it lathers up nicely and isn't too harsh or excessively gritty. I would definitely repurchase, but right now I'm trying scrubs from other indie shops to see which one I like best.

NARS Smudgeproof Eye Shadow Base
I think this is the month to be fed up with poor packaging. I refuse to buy any more moisturizers in jars (I have a cream that I'm using up, and a favorite eye cream that doesn't come in any other packaging, argh) and I'm on the fence about this because of the tube packaging. I think I want to try a squeeze tube primer. However, this does work really well, so I'll have to think about it some more.

Neutrogena Waterproof Eye makeup remover
I feel like I go through these really quickly (the last one I emptied was in August - that's about 3-4 months, I guess? How long does it take you to go through eye makeup remover?) so even though they're cheap and work fairly well, I'm not sure if I will repurchase. For now, I have a Marcelle remover that I like, so we'll see.

Bath and Body Works Marshmallow Fireside candle - giant and mini.
I don't burn these things as often as I should, though I do like walking by an open candle and catching a waft of its sweet scent. These are finally finished, but I, erm, bought two different candles to delight us this winter.

Bath and Body Works Homemade Cookies candle
This is an older candle. I wasn't initially impressed with it, but we burned through it this past month and it really does make the place smell like cookies. Not really synthetic or cloying, though. I'd buy another one in the future.

That Clinique jar is full of another Stila shadow that crumbled. Tossing.

Mum came to visit and made some comments about tossing out her eye shadows once they got too old. Which got me thinking...if even my mother, who uses up her lipsticks and hits pan on everything, tosses her makeup because of age, I NEED TO BE DOING THIS. So I got rid of some of my older shadows: two Stila palettes, two Stila singles, and essentially the rest of my indie shadows (except Fyrinnae). I feel better. I also got rid of an older mascara and a nubby Zero pencil that I never use. Expect more cleaning in months to come.

Woohoo! I have some other items that are on their last legs, too, so next month may be wild, as well. Who can tell?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Go Forth, Be Vamp-eh!

With lipstick, of course. I know it's been all about lip products lately - especially punchy ones - here on Eye Heart It, but today ALL of the Lipstick Bandits are encouraging you to get your vamp on. We bring you options! You're sure to find one that suits.
Rouge d'Armani 609.
Mine is Rouge d'Armani 609, of course. I seriously think this is one of the darkest shades on offer by a high-end brand (trust me, I swatched A LOT of lipsticks that day; Tom Ford's Black Orchid is slightly redder and shimmery on me, and Chanel's Rouge Noir was not yet re-released so I didn't try it). The formula is lightweight and comfortable.
You can blot it down to sheer out the color (though this also tones down the glossy finish), which I have done on occasion. It can be built up again quite easily, as well. Versatile! Perfect for baby steps. I've also layered different glosses over it for variety, and that works quite well.

And now you must see what the other Bandits have picked!
What's your vampy weapon lipstick of choice?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Fall Features: Nails

This is mostly a photo spam post to show you snippets of colors that I've been loving lately. Rich, opulent, earthly shades have really caught my eye this season, which surprises me - I'm not usually a fan of warm shades. There's a time for everything, I guess! These feel to me like all the colors of fall - and yes, there are a few dark greens, because in WA state, we also have evergreens to balance out the rich red, orange, and gold of fall.
You can see how it kind of looks like it's an olive foil on a blackened base, here.
Butter London Wallis. I was vehemently against this shade when it first burst onto the blogs, but then a week ago I saw a swatch of it again and was surprised by how appealing it had become. One Ulta 20% coupon later, it was in my hands - and on them! Perfect blackened gold-olive thing, though the formula is a little finicky.
Copper foil with magenta flecks and green glitter. Amazing.

Butter London Scuppered. New for the holidays. I had to have it because of the green flecks on the copper base - somehow that just screamed at me. Well, and then Eugenia went and swatched the whole lot. I would probably buy less nail polish if not for her, haha. (But would I be a happier person? HA.) Snagged this from with $4.22 in drugstore dollars to use, plus a Lippmann GWP. #fistpump

Dior Shadow*. I can't stop going on about this. IT'S SO PRETTY, GUYS.

Butter London West End Wonderland. Another old one, but I got it in that Coterie deal a while back (along with the top coat and two others. That BL top coat makes a HUGE difference with BL polishes, let me tell you. And I guess that makes sense, but who wants to be sensible?) and it's beautiful. I love the copper flecks in it. Don't love: removal. It took me five cotton pads and I almost needed a nap afterward. I don't have a swatch because I forgot to take one when I wore it, and I'm not doing that again for a while. Not even for you guys. For a beautiful swatch, see Goose's Glitter. That's the post that made me buy this, anyway.
Sorry about the bad the time I realized how bad they were, I had removed this, LOL.

OPI Live and Let Live (Skyfall collection). Another one I'm going to pin on Eugenia, haha. Blackened green shimmery thing. Love. Darker and less warm than I anticipated, but lovely in its own way. Reminds me of some of the new A England polishes, so maybe I can hold off on those for a while. There needs to be an end to the mad nail polish buying that has occurred recently. The formula on this was really nice - rather impressed.

OPI Goldeneye (Skyfall collection). Pretty, pretty, pretty. Gold. Blingy. Nice formula. More like a ton of warm gold flecks in a clear base, but this is two coats and it's pretty opaque. Would transition well into the holidays, too.

I haven't started moving on into holiday metallics or anything moodier yet, but that will probably happen after Thanksgiving, once all of the Christmas decorations really come out. I'm kind of scared. But that will be a whole other blog post!

What are your favorite nail shades this season? 

*gifted to me by the Reductionista herself

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Thursday Post

Texture Like Sun: Bottle. It's interesting, and a nice blend of different styles.

Stories like this are so touching.

For my dog peeps. This site is hilarious.

This kind of gives me hope that we can all still look good, even after having children and getting older. Of course, she's a celebrity and probably has better eating habits/gym habits, but still. She's human. And I kind of like Gwen.

If Dennison could climb trees, I bet he'd sleep like these guys.

This IS SO COOL. He even trims down his stick when he realizes that it's too long.
He was there first, and no, he's not moving.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Sometimes I Strike Out

Sometimes I end up returning items, too. Even really beautiful things. It's a balance between what is unique to me, what is luxurious, what is a little too pricey, a little too indulgent. Some things are worth keeping, and some aren't. It's always a personal decision, and the choice is always mine.
Rouge d'Armani 408, Rosewood Red
This seems right up my alley, right? It's the red lipstick from Armani's fall collection. I love this lipstick formula, and I love reds. I ordered it without swatching (though I spent an inordinate amount of time looking at Arianne's face. And no, that's not creepy. Okay, maybe it is.) and I'm not sure what I was hoping for, but after wearing it once, I just decided it wasn't for me.
L-R: Armani 609, Armani 408, Dior Nocturne, MAC Runaway Red
I think it wasn't different enough from other reds I have. On my lips, it really reminded me of Dior Nocturne. It's darker and not metallic, but it has a sheen, so they seemed really similar. Maybe not exactly in shade, but in feel - for example, if I would pull out Armani 408, I'd use Nocturne as well. So, bottom line, not worth keeping, simply because it wasn't different enough. In terms of formula, it was lovely - on par with other Armani lipsticks. I love them.
Wearing Armani 408.
Ultimately, I returned it. Which goes to show you - I don't keep everything. Sometimes things don't work out. Sometimes I have similar colors - and I have to be ruthless about that!

If you're interested in this one, though, some counters do still have it. Check around! It's $30 US and LE.

What's the last thing you returned, and why?

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Currently Loving: Things in SQUEEZE TUBES

I know I just ranted about a squeeze tube gloss, but this is different. This is tints and gels and texture and performance wise, it's all different. AND AMAZING.
Becca Strawberry Beach Tint, Becca Vicuna Eye Tint, MUFE Aqua Brow #25
These things have made it onto the daily routine (well, sometimes not the Beach Tint, depending on the colors I'm using). All of them last all day, and are water-resistant.
The Eye Tint tip is exactly the same, and the MUFE Aqua Brow tip is very similar, as well.

The MUFE Aqua Brow is super easy to use.

The MUFE Aqua Brow gives a very natural finish - doesn't make my brows look drawn in/painted on at all (though I do have sort of full brows to begin with), and the color is fabulous. Many brow colors are too warm, but #25 matches beautifully. I use a Real Techniques Angled brush to apply.
Vicuna Eye Tint in a dot, and then blended.
The Eye Tint is a pale champagne color, one of my favorites. It is the same color as my skin, so I've been using it as a base to even out the eyelid a smidgen and to provide a glowing base. Works beautifully; after layering on a powder shadow, I don't get any creasing. It is really, really, sheer, though - not much of a color, just a kind of pearlescent sheen. I doubt the shade would show up on anyone.
Had to play around with the Strawberry Beach Tint swatch. Used Urban Decay Covet for the leaves and Benefit Magic Ink for the seeds. Becca Strawberry is a gorgeous orange red. GORGEOUS.
The Beach Tint is fairly easy to apply (though everyone is right - mash up your tube first to prevent the product from separating) on both lips and cheeks, though I find it can be a bit splotchy on cheeks; I haven't found quite the right technique yet. On lips:
Becca Strawberry Beach Tint. Dries matte. Actually quite drying, which is a shame, since I love the matte finish. Applied with my fingers. 
All together, now!
Face: Bobbi Brown Corrector (Peach), Smashbox High Definition Concealer (Light), Annabelle BB Compact Makeup
Brows: MUFE Aqua Brow #25

Eyes: Becca Vicuna Eye Tint, L'Oreal Sahara Treasure, theBalm Sleek, Benefit Magic Ink, Urban Decay Bourbon, L'Oreal Voluminous Power Volume
Cheeks: Becca Strawberry Beach Tint, Laura Mercier Rose Rendezvous
Lips: Becca
Strawberry Beach Tint
And bonus: strawberry matches the fish on my earrings, haha!
Earrings from: Pretty Kiku.
Becca Beach Tint 
Becca Eye Tint
MUFE Aqua Brow
I bought my Becca products from the Becca Cosmetics website. I bought the MUFE Aqua Brow from Sephora. The Eye Tint is $24, the Beach Tint is $25, and the MUFE Aqua Brow is $20. All seem like they will last a long time, as they only require a teeny bit per use.

Friday, November 9, 2012

The Beauty of Science #4: Sunscreens

Now that we know all about UV radiation, we can talk about sunscreens. First, some basic facts to prepare you.

There are three types of UV radiation: UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C. UV-C is completely filtered out by the earth's atmosphere (another reason to love the ozone layer and stop making holes in it!), but UV-A and UV-B make it down to us earth dwellers. UV-B is responsible for sunburns, and while UV-A doesn't have an obvious immediate effect, it does cause damage, like premature aging and skin cancer.

Next: SPF stands for "sun protection factor." It's a general marker for how long you can be out in the sun without burning. This does mean it only takes UV-B radiation into consideration, however, so you need to make sure that your sunscreen also deals with UV-A rays, as well.

Finally: as with all things, sunscreen is a result of ongoing experimentation, studies, and observations. A lot of this information is simply as much as we know right now. I do encourage you to do some research on your own on issues that are important to you - I've included a few starter links at the bottom of this post.

Now. A common question: what is the difference between physical and chemical formulas?

Physical chemicals are mineral formulas; that is, they are titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. These are inorganic compounds (no carbon involved), and they work by reflecting or scattering UV radiation; this means that it bounces off, and doesn't get absorbed by your skin (think: lots of tiny mirrors spread all over your skin). This is where the term sunblock comes from, and also explains the white cast you get from physical sunscreens - visible light is also reflected off of the particles.
"Nomenclature" = naming system. We use a lot of prefixes.

Since they're mineral compounds, they are not absorbed by your skin, and are therefore usually safer for those prone to skin sensitivities (the "nano-" ones are controversial right now, though - they might just be small enough to penetrate). They can clog pores, so make sure you use a good cleanser. These formulas tend to be thicker and maybe harder to rub in. However, in general, these compounds are stable (they don't break down easily), and zinc oxide is broad-spectrum - that is, protects against both UV-A and UV-B radiation. This is really important.
Common chemical sunscreen.

Chemical formulas, on the other hand, act as sunscreens by absorbing UV radiation and releasing it as heat, instead. Common ingredients include PABA (para-aminobenzoic acid), avobenzone, octisalate, oxybenzone. In general, since these are not chemically inert (they do readily absorb UV radiation, after all), they can eventually break down and can also be absorbed by the skin, which is the reason that they are somewhat controversial and still widely studied. Certain ones also do protect against UV-A radiation - a quick Google search of an ingredient will tell you exactly what it does.

Hope this clears up any confusion or questions you may have had about the all-important issue of sun protection! There is actually a lot more to talk about, but I feel like this is already information overload (it is for me, anyway). One last thing I have to mention: sunscreen ratings and common ingredients actually vary greatly depending on where in the world you are - different countries have different rules about what qualifies as a sunscreen, and what is considered safe to use. 

With that said, I'm opening this up for questions and comments as always. I love hearing from you, so please don't hesitate to let me know what you think!

(If you missed it, here's the introduction to the "Beauty of Science" series.)

Smith, Janice. Organic Chemistry, 3rd ed. McGraw-Hill, 2006.
"How to Pick the Best Sunscreen," Bailey, Cynthia. Dr. Cynthia Bailey Skincare. 2010.
"How Sunscreen Works," Helmenstine, Anne Marie. Chemistry.