Naked 2 – Thoughts & Comparisions

So just one post below this one, I had the Naked 2 on my new wish list for this year but I expressed concern over whether or not I’ll really want it once I see in person. Yesterday, on my weekly mall excursion, I saw it in person. It wasn’t in the main Sephora on the mall floor but I found it in the JCP Sephora because I was sent over there for my foundation color.


My first impression was that I liked the sleek look of the packaging and the colors look nice in the pan. And then I swatched them and I wasn’t all that impressed. The picture above is the naked original on top and then the naked 2 colors on bottom. I outlined the colors I liked in each. As you can see I only like and use about half of the colors in the original Naked which was the main reason why I hesitated on jumping the gun and ordering Naked 2. I just felt like if I didn’t use most of the Naked original colors then I wouldn’t like Naked 2 that much but what made me put it on my want list was that I am a fan of cooler neutrals which is what the Naked 2 is supposed to be chock full of. It actually is about half cool and half warm tones. And a lot of the shades are almost exactly like the original Naked shades. I don’t use sparkly golds much like half baked and that was repeated in Naked 2. I just thought it was too yellow of a gold for me. And then I thought I was going to like Busted in Naked 2 because I really like Hustle from Naked but I swatched them next to each other and I didn’t like Busted. I like Hustle because it looks like a smokey dark grey tone brown but it’s actually a purple undertone. I thought busted from Naked 2 would be the same idea but it’s just mostly a dark shimmery brown. I also appreciate that Naked 2 has a matte black but I’m so picky about my blacks that I didn’t swatch it. There was this time a few years back that I spend months searching for the darkest black that actually wore black on the eyes and finally found it in UD’s Perversion. I just haven’t found a black that compares to it yet so I didn’t bother swatching blackout. I did like the following four colors from the Naked 2 palette though.

I liked the matte highlight in foxy because although it looked yellowish in the pan, swatched it’s the perfect shade for your skin because of the yellow undertone.

I also liked tease which is a purple tone taupe color. Purple toned taupes are actually some of my favorite colors.

I also liked verve which was the most beautiful color I’ve seen in a long time. It’s a creamy shimmery white silver color and I was almost tempted to buy the palette for that color alone. I don’t usually go for shimmers, but this color just had the most beautiful turnout with it’s creamy consistency.

Lastly I really liked YDK because it was also another shade I haven’t seen before. It’s a rose gold shade that was so just so unique and beautiful. I don’t know if those two shades are limited to the palette or if they sell them as individual but I will definitely be researching them.

In the end, four shades didn’t justify the $50 price tag because when I bought the Naked original I already knew I would never use the shades on the right and I didn’t. I haven’t dipped my brush in the right shades once with the exception of Hustle. I’ll wait it out and see if I can find Verve and YDK as individuals.

[ ♡ ] 2011 Beauty Favorites

Recently I’ve been buying a lot of new makeup and skin care items and as I move things around and reorganize my stash it’s given me a chance to look at what I really liked and used this year and what worked for me best. I’ve gathered my favorites below and thought I’d share with you all what I used and loved most!

First, Skincare. Keep in mind a lot of these things that are on here are recent discoveries but I already know they’re now staples so I’ve decided to add them on as well.

• I’ve been using my Clarisonic Mia for over two weeks now everyday and so far I liked it. I don’t know that it’s changed my skin or anything but I like it because it controls how long the product is on my face. Before I would lather up the cleanser, spread it on my face and then wash off all in under 30 seconds. With this, I feel like I get a good all around clean and scrub because it’s timed to shut off after a minute of use and you work it around your face as you go.
• My Neutrogena oil free eye makeup remover has also been my go to eye makeup remover this year. The only thing that I don’t love is that it makes your eyes feel oily even though there’s no oil in it. I think next year I may have a new favorite eye makeup remover but this one worked well for me this year.
• I love my Guicci Guilty perfume even though I’ve only had it for a month. I’ve been wanting this all year though and when I did get it, it was and is every bit as good as I remembered it to be!
• My Origins Mimosa moisturizer is my nightly cream. Its great because it has anti-aging but it’s not a thick cream like most other anti-aging creams. It’s sort of a soft, thin lotion texture and it smells so good! I’m almost done with the jar so probably sometime in the next 2-3 months I’ll be searching for a new night cream.
• I really like my Kate Sommerville spf 55 daily moisturizer so far. I’ve used it for almost 2 months now and it’s a daily part of my routine. I just love that it’s such a high spf but not thick and it absorbs nice and quick. And it’s not oily feeling.
• And of course my all time go to cleanser is my Neutrogena oil-free acne wash in grapefruit. No matter how many times I try different cleansers I always come back to this one because it just works and it gives my face the perfect amount of cleanliness and dryness after using it so it’s just perfect for me. I’ve been mostly acne free this year (fingers crossed) and I think it’s due to my consistent skin care routine. I’ve been a lot better at taking care of my skin and I’m so happy at the results!

Next, I have my favorite face products of this year.

• First is my smashbox primer. I used this pretty religiously this year but I didn’t realize how much I loved it until I dipped my toe into trying the MUFE HD primer. It just showed me how this product works with my face so much better.
• Next is a new item that is not really new, it’s the BE Pressed Mineral Veil. It’s new to my collection ( a week old) but it’s not really new in that I’ve always loved BE Mineral Veil. I just stopped using it because I was tired of the loose powder. So you can imagine how excited I was when they came out with the pressed version. I’ve used this everyday for the past week to set my makeup and I love it! I just makes my face so flawless looking and the combination of this and the Benefit porefessional does a really good job of keeping the oils at bay! You can bet that I’ll probably pick up my foundation shade in medium beige when it comes out as pressed too!
• Next are my two foundations of the year. Only this year did I start to wear foundation on a daily basis as part of my makeup routine so in a sense I’m still new to the foundation market. I’ve only tried four foundations so far: Revlon Photoready, Revlon ColorStay, Laura Mercier Silk Crème, and MUFE HD and so far these two are still my favorite. On here the shades are so different but on the skin they’re actually not too far apart. I still haven’t found a shade that matches me perfectly which is why these two are so different. Recently I’ve been using the colorstay more because its closer to where my skin tone is now but I really like the feel, stay and consistency of both of these foundations.
• Next is a also a newbie. It’s the Bobbi Brown concealer in Natural. I’m still searching for a perfect concealer but so far this one is getting close. I’ve now realize that I like creamy concealers with a sort of thicker consistency so that it will actually sit on the skin rather than blend out and this one does a good job of that. The only problem is it’s a tiny bit too orange for my skin if not blended out and the shade above this is too pinky and light. But for the most part it works.
• Next is a newbie as well, the Benefit Porefesional Primer. I just love this so far! It’s not silicone feeling like the Smashbox and it sinks in really quick. Also as mentioned above, I think this combined with the mineral veil is just magic for controlling my oil. I don’t know if it covers my pores since I don’t have super enlarged pores but I know it helps my makeup sit still longer.
• Next is my setting powder of the year, my Amazing cosmetics powder set. I’ve hit pan on this and it’s nearly almost gone! I love this pressed translucent powder! It feels nice and velvety and sets my makeup beautifully!
• Lastly is this NYX eyeshadow base. The latter part of this year I used this a lot because halfway through the year my huge Urban decay professional size primer became too hard and dry to use so I started using this and its actually really nice. It’s super creamy and blendable and melts right into my skin. I don’t know how it compares in terms of keeping my shadow on but on top of it shadows don’t crease and they do look better and bolder.

Next, I have my cheek products of the year:

• My go two combo whenever I don’t want to think about a look is my NARS orgasm/laguna blush and bronzer duo. Both colors are always flattering with basically any look and skin tone.
• My favorite blush of the year has got to be NARs Mata Hari. I’ve been really into purple tone blushes this year and this one is my favorite. It brightens up my skin really well and I loved it for cool tone looks.
• Next is a new favorite, my itty bitty benefit Hoola. I will definitely be buying a full size of this after I’m done with this small one. I think I’ve found my HG bronzer. I love it because it’s matte and a brown tone, not a shimmer and orange tone like NARS Laguna. This one will probably be a staple next year. I just wish I can get a full size one in packaging like this rather than the usual boxed sets.
• Next is my other favorite blush of the year, MAC’s Sakura. Again, I was obsessed with purple blushes this year. This one is a lot brighter and cooler than Nars Mata Hari and sometimes I would use them both together like put this on the cheeks and then Mata Hari as a bronzer to deepen the purple on my cheek bones.
• My go to pink blush this year was MAC pink swoon. It’s just the perfect shade of pink and I wore this whenever I wasn’t doing purple looks 🙂

Next are my favorite eye shadows/palettes.

• I really used my stila palette a lot when it was the 6 pan palette. I’ve boxed my favorite shades in the second picture. As you can see I’m a neutrals and smokes kind of girl.
• I’ve also loved my two maybellene quads in natural smokes and mocha motion this year. I kept these in my makeup bag so I would use these whenever I did my makeup on the road and they were perfect. On the neutral smokes palette I mostly used the pink toned color as highlighter and then the dark brown taupe above in the crease. On the mocha motion quad I used most of it except the grey shade.
• Of course I loved my naked palette this year because again, I’m a neutrals girl. I only used the light shades of it though and one of the darker shades because it’s got a purple undertone. I don’t think I’ve even dipped my brush into the other shades which is why I’m on the fence about purchasing Naked 2.
• Lastly I have my Loreal quad in Canyon. They’re my on-the-road browns and they work really well for a brown smokey eye or just a brown neutral eye.

Next are eye products of the year!

• I was really into gel liner this year and barely wore my usual liquid. I’ve played around with a few and this Stila one turned out to be my go-to gel liner. I’ve had it for a while and it still hasn’t dried out yet so that’s a plus!
• Next is my new favorite lash curler from Shiseido. I thought I loved my shu one but I’ve changed teams. This one is a lot flatter and better for my eyeshape than the shu and it’s a cute shiny little black curler!
• Next is my NYX double ended pencil with a pink and brown for the brows. I just use the pink side for highlighting under my brow and in my inner corner.
• Next is my brow pencil for the year. This year I stopped using powder and switched to a pencil which was the best decision I’ve ever made for my brows because they’re super thin on the ends after the arch and powder just doesn’t stay on my skin randomly without some hair there to hold it. This way I can sort of draw that section in. I just like this faceshop one because it’s got a spooly on the other end and the color matches me.
• Next is my go to waterline pencil from MAC in Graphblack. I found that it works well on the waterline without giving me raccoon eyes on the bottom. I tried the UD one but it just didn’t stay. I’m still trying out MUFE Aqua liner.
• I also really liked my NYX jumbo pencil in Mocha this year under my brown and purple shadows.
• And lastly, my favorite mascara, MUFE smokey lash. I’ve gone back to this over and over again and this will always be my favorite mascara.

And then here are my favorite lip products of the year:

• First is my favorite lipgloss of the year, The Sephora lipgloss in number 20. It’s just a great nude and it smells amazing! Also it is not sticky at all and still has color pay off for being a nude!
• Next is my NYX jumbo lip pencil in iced coffee. It’s sort of a brown nude and it was my go to nude of the year because I’ve literately spent half my year looking for nude lipsticks.
• Next are my two favorite NYX lipsticks this year, Thalia and Tea Rose. Thalia is just the perfect muavey nude and Tea Rose is just a perfect muted rose everyday color.
• Next is my new favorite pink of the year by Nars called Schiap. I just love the stay and consistency and the bright pink color!
• Finally, my favorite pink lipgloss in haute from Lorac. This one was my go to for pinky lips and light purple nudey lips.

And finally, my favorite brushes of 2011!

• My surprise favorite of the year was this Elf Contour Brush. I have 3 of them and I just love that its so versatile. I use it for liquid foundation and for powders so its just great and it’s only $3. I plan on getting more, one for each different foundation.
• Next is my huge Sephora Bronzing brush that I actually use for powder. It’s so dense and big so I just do a tiny swirl in my powder, tap and then brush on.
• Next is another newbie favorite from Real Techniques. I use this with bronzer and stick it right under my cheekbones and it just highlights the shape perfectly.
• Next are my two go-to brushes and I have multiples of these. They are the elf shadow and blending brushes and for $1 they are amazing! My sister and I used to keep our makeup together so I would tape my brushes so that we wouldn’t get mixed up and that’s what you see around the brushes. It’s just decorative tape.
• For doing more blending up the crease I love my Sonia Kashuk blending brush. It’s bigger and fluffier than the elf one so it blends out harsh creases a little better but it also spreads it out more.
• And last is my go to gel liner brush from smash box. I found that I prefer this brush to angled flat ones because this one is easier for me to draw a wing rather than drag out a wing.

And that’s it for my favorite beauty products of 2011. I know a lot of them are new products but keep in mind that I bought a lot of beauty products in the last 2 months so the ones I did pick out to add to this list are things that I’ve been loving and things I know I’ll continue to love in 2012. I can’t believe this year is over! I’m so excited for 2012!

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Sephora VIB & F&F sale 2011

This post is long overdue but I’ve been running around with multiple memory cards and lost these pictures so I just found them. You’ll be glad to know I’ve upgraded my 2 & 4 gigs to an 8 gig now so I can run around with just one card and not get confused 🙂 .

The Friends and family sale was I think the last weekend of October and anyone who entered an email address got 20% off their entire purchase for about a week. I was actually stressing out after my first order because I was wondering if I bought everything I wanted. I didn’t want to forget something and pay full price later. And then in the middle of the sale week I got a little card from sephora about the VIB sale in the following 2 weeks that also gave me 20% so I was so relieved!

Anyways here is what I got total. I am missing one thing though which was actually my first and most important buy. For some reason I didn’t take pictures of it. It was the NARs Danmari cheek palette with the 6 pans. I’ll post that up later when I get a chance but here’s the rest.

First a group shot:

I got a shiseido eyecream. I was on beautypedia 24 hours straight before finally deciding on an eyecream. Apparently Jar style packaging is not ideal for keeping the chemical balance of products.

It’s the Bio-performance eye contour cream and it’s super concentrated. I’ve been using it for over a month now and I had to take a 2 week break because it was irritating my eye so much. I started out using it every night and then I read the ingredient list and saw retinol and realized I should’ve eased myself in. So then I took the break and then started up again with twice a week for a week and then every other day for another week and now I use it every night and it doesn’t irritated my eyes or make them watery at night anymore. The problem is it seems to not sink in really well because some days I’ll wake up to wash my face and my eyes will burn a little and I don’t even use that much. I literally use like half a pump for both eyes because my eyes are sensitive to developing milia so I try not to put too much on them. I don’t know, I guess I’m still trying to figure out the best way to use this but one thing is for sure, I’m not stopping my eye cream usage. And I like the packaging of this product because the dispenser hole has a little cover too so it seems extra clean.

Next, more skin care. I’m trying to up my skincare game and find the perfect combination of things to fit me. I got a new moisturizer, the Kate Sommerville spf 55 sunscreen. Previously I was using Neutrogena oil free moisturizer spf 30 but that’s running out so I decided to try something new and with higher spf. I was deciding between this one and the philosophy one that’s also spf 55. I almost went with that one because its supposed to also have anti aging properties but in the end I decided to let my night routine cover my antiaging needs for now and go with this one.

I actually really like it so far. The packaging is a nice pump and it comes out like a white liquid but it applies smoothly and not greasy. It’s not thick either. The only thing I don’t like is that it has a problem standing up probably because the weight of the product is at the top and not the bottom.

Next I got the Laura Mercier Face Polish (which I’ve just returned two days ago and exchanged it for something else.)

At first I liked it because it’s very grainy and super abrasive. I liked that it felt like I was really scrubbing my face but after using it once a week for over a month I realized that’s all I liked about it. It didn’t feel like it was doing anything other than scrubbing. I want to have a product that I like because of the chemical properties, not the added bead particles. So I exchanged it for a different exfoliater that you’ll see in a few posts.

Next and Last from the friends and family sale I got the Laura Mercier silk crème foundation. I am in Bamboo Beige.

I like it. It’s a medium to full coverage but it’s a very thick consistency when it comes out. I was shocked at how small the bottle was a first because it’s around $40 but I’m used to the size now and I’ve barely made a dent in it so its ok. I like it well enough but I feel like it doesn’t set well even with powders and spray setters like it doesn’t quite sink into the skin enough to not come off with a tissue. I also feel like it doesn’t help stop the oils on my face but I like it well enough to keep.

Next are things I got from the VIB sale. I got the perfume I’ve been wanting forever, Gucci Guilty intense and it every bit as delicious as I remembered! The intense version is super concentrated though so I just do one spray on my left wrist, rub in my right wrist and then rub both on the sides of my neck and I’m good to go.

It’s sort of a nice sexy scent without the dark florals, citrus and oriental type smells. I already have two new perfumes in the line up to buy. I’m now eyeing Armani Aqua di goa and the Chloe perfume.

Next I got a Nar’s lipstick that I’ve been wanting forever. It’s a bright hot pink in Schiap.

I didn’t use if until just this past week because I was a little disappointed in it when I first got it home and tried it on. It turned out to be much more on the magenta side and less true hot pink but last week when I used it finally started falling in love with it and appreciating the color. It’s quite pretty!

And then you know I can’t resist a good holiday value set so I got two, both from MUFE. First is the aqua liners set.

I’ve never before tried the aqua liners so I thought this would be a great way to try them. I’ve only used the large black one so far and I like it. It’s quick drying though so you can’t really smudge it. I mostly use pencil liners for the waterline though because I prefer liquid and gel liner for over the lid. As far as its waterline performance goes I’d say it’s alright. I do find that If I put it on my top waterline, I’ll get black smudges on the bottom of my eyes after a few hours so that’s a little disappointing but so far I still having found the perfect waterline pencil that will not transfer at all during the day.

Then I got the best of MUFE set.

It comes with three full sized products and three samples. The full sizes were the lipgloss, mascara and aqua cream. I mostly bought this because I wanted a new smokely lash mascara and I wanted to give the HD powder another shot. Out of this group I really only love the mascara. I liked the aqua cream because it works nice as a base but it’s a champagne shimmery color which I already have in a mac paint pot so not super exciting. I hated the lipgloss because it’s super sticky and shimmery, like middle school shimmery. I like the little pencil but I already have one from the other set so again not super exciting. And then I just don’t like the primer that much. It goes on as a sort of thin lotion and I don’t feel like it does much for keeping my makeup nice and intact. It feels like just putting on another moisturizer. To be fair I do only have my Smashbox primer and a Bare minerals primer to compare it to so I’m not a primer expert or anything. I just find that I like how the smashbox one performs better in terms of smoothing my face for foundation and locking in oils. The HD powder I know is a cult favorite but I just don’t love it still. I’ve tried it once before and wasn’t impressed with it and this time is sort of the same. It’s very fine and ok on the face but it gives your face a shiny layer of sheen. I don’t know how to describe it. It’s sort of like putting Bare essentials mineral veil on your face and it gives you sort of that angelic glow like a soft line is shining on the side of your face but instead this one looks like a white cast, not an angelic glow. I don’t know, I’ll still try to use it and see if I can find some way to like it. I have to play around with it first.

Then I got a sample bag of tons of fragrances that I have not tried.

And then some random bonus items I got around the same time. My aunt gave me this lash growing serum from Walgreens.

I’ve used a bit of it so far but not on my lash line, just my brows. I’m too paranoid to use it on my lash line because again I’m prone to milia and because I wear contacts and have a special fear of things getting in my eye so I figured I’ll test it out on brows first. I haven’t used it religiously so nothing’s changed yet but I’m working on putting it into my skincare night routine so I can get a better feel for how it works. Its just like a clear gel, no smell or anything.

And then with ulta’s 20% off sale + buy one get one 50% off I got some real techniques brushes for a really good deal. I got these two sets.

I will probably do a separate post about these later but for now I like some and dislike some so it’s still up in t he air.

And that’s it for my earlier haul that’s being posted out of order.

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Review – LA Lipsticks: NYX lip swatches & Faceshop

Part III of reviews. These are the lip swatches of lipsticks I purchased in LA. I purchased a total of 10 lipsticks at three different retailers, one in San Fran. The last lipstick on the right is number 11 from Faceshop in Chicago that I’ve never swatched before so I threw it in the bunch. I actually also have an Illamasqua lipstick thats number 10 but that’s in my makeup bag so it will get it’s own review but for now here are 9 plus one Chicago one.

I got most of the NYX lipsticks from a store in downtown LA on 6th & Los Angeles. Right around that area is a cluster of cosmetics shops that sell NYX products for good prices. I think I paid $2 each? I also bought a few from a shop called the variety shop in San Francisco. They were $2 there except for the bigger lipstick in the middle which was $7. The faceshop lipsticks are from a faceshop store inside a plaza in Koreantown. I have no idea what the plaza name is because its not one of the bigger ones but if you google faceshop LA you’ll find it. The lipsticks ranged from $12-$15 depending on the finish, matte was the more expensive one. The last Faceshop lipstick was from another faceshop store in Niles, IL and it was on sale for 40% off so I think I got it for like $4. As far as choosing colors for the NYX lipsticks, I just pop open the lid and take a look at the color against my hand to see if I like it and have a color similar to it and if I don’t have a color like it then I’ll just buy it. For the faceshop ones I swatched them on the back of my hand so its kind of hit or miss on the lips once you get it home. I try not to choose lipsticks with glitter or shimmer in them and also duochrome types that change colors if you tilt it. I also stay away from frosty colors.

Here are the swatches on my arm:

Now onto the lip swatches. Keep in mind, the no flash pictures are not really indicative of the color because I have huge window on my left so the lighting is off. The flash version is more true to the color.

First is NYX round lipstick in perfect.

It’s really close to Iconic but has a brown undertone. Its hard to describe because so many of the shades I picked are similar but this one is a brown nude that is only slightly darker than my natural lip color.

Second is Iconic.

It looks close to Perfect but this dark nude color is more pink toned and less brown.

Next is Sierra.

Sierra is a nudey brown orange. It’s really pretty. You can definitely tell its orange and different from the others.

Next is heredes.

Heredes looks close to the other two first ones but this one looks more like a burnt apricot nudey brick color. I know, it’s a weird way to describe it but that’s the closest I can get to a description of the color.

Next is Hot pink.

The one is hot pink but comes on sort of sheer, not quite like a creamy spread like the others. It reminds me of the pinky lipliner. Its like a fushia, not really a hot pink.

Next is the NYX black label lipstick in India.

I actually grabbed this color off the counter and threw it in with my purchases as I was checking out because I swatched it and thought it was so cute on my hand. Its like a really cute baby pink but on my lips it just looks white and washed out. No worries though, I plan to layer with this lipstick so I should be able to use it.

Next up are the Faceshop lipsticks. First is the Matte orange color in OR201.

This one is really cute. Its actually a lighter version of the Illamasqua Obey color that I got. Its just a light muted orange.

Next is the glossy orange in glossy OR201.

It’s just a nice, moisturizing sheer glossy orange shade. Nothing special.

Next is the glossy PK101 shade.

This one is the same finish as the orange color but lighter. It’s a baby pink glossy shade.

Lastly, here is the Faceshop Lovely one in PP401.

It’s a really pretty raspberry purple that’s matte but creamy and glides on nicely. I actually want a blush in this shade.

Overall I’m happy with my haul. The only thing I don’t like about nyx is that you never know what the lipstick will be like when you put on it your lips because they all come in varying finishes and come on differently with no indication of what is what. Most of them are a nice creamy formula but some are sheer with flecks and some just don’t spread well. The faceshop ones are nice but too pricey for the normal/basic quality of the lipsticks. Overall I think I’m going to stop buying faceshop lipsticks until I go back to korea and stop buying Nyx lipstick until I find a shade I definitely don’t own.

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Review – LA NYX Liners

Moving onward, here are the arm swatches for my nyx pencils. Some of these are from previous purchases but I didn’t remember which were which so I just grabbed them all. I got most of these from LA. It was 12 for $9 so a really good deal. I chose some lip liners and eyeliners.

I tried to get a shot of the names but the light cast a glare on it so its hard to see for some liners.

And here are the swatches with the names right above in no flash and flash.

I haven’t tried most of them on my lips so I can’t see how true to swatch on the arm is to the lip swatch but I have used other nyx lip liners that I really like. As for the eyeliner if you wear it on your lid and not waterline then it has good staying power. I’ve had the teal color on for a few hours now and it hasn’t rubbed off or anything. I’ll do a waterline trial soon but I’m going to guess it won’t work so well or last too long because they’re not made specifically for that purpose.

I really like the range of colors I picked though. I now feel like I have some good basics like emerald, blue, grey, silver and gold. I didn’t buy black because I’m picky about black liner and I’ve found very few pencil liners in black that work for me so I’m reserving black for products that work really well and are good for daily long wear.

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Review – LA blushes

So I have all these new products that I’ve posted up but haven’t swatched or tried on and I thought I’d do some swatch posts. I also need to pull out a box for items to try and keep it on my vanity so they won’t go to waste.

First I’m going to swatch and review the blushes I got. I only got two in LA, one randomly and one I planned on getting. I got a light orange from Illamasqua in Lover and a purple one from the Faceshop’s lovely line.

I actually went looking for the Illamasqua blush because like I’ve said previously, my Sephora doesn’t carry that line. And I don’t want to pay $25 for a blush and not like it. So I did some research and found a sephora in LA that carried the line and so I picked up a blush. I originally wanted excite which looks just like lover but much brighter and more orange. But I swatched them and thought excite was too bright for me so I went for lover instead. The faceshop one I just picked up because I’ve been on a purple blush hunt lately.

Here are the swatches on my arm first without flash then with flash.

The illamasqua blush picture turned out more orange than it actually looks. It’s still a orange blush but more on the coral side with pinks in it. It’s matte, no shimmer and has good staying power. I like it but I wanted more of a muted orange and lighter orange. This one is still darker than I’d like. I paid $25 + tax for this one.

The faceshop blush is actually pretty light and looks close to the pictured shot. Its not purple on the cheek but it does have that purple sheen/undertone. It looks closer to a highlighter than a blush but I actually really like it as a blush with some pink on the cheek hollow where you usually apply bronzer for definition. It works sort of like a doll look. I never thought I’d like super light cheeks but it looks really cute. It doesn’t have good staying power though so I’d say set it and reapply. This one was around $9.

Overall I’m happy with my purchases. Its given me more blushes to add to my collection and given me a chance to try a new brand. I’m now on the look out for a light, muted orange blush and a raspberry purple blush.

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Currently Loving – Items that work!

I decided to do a little post on some of my favorite skincare and hair care type items that have been working for me. I like trying new things because I’m forever looking for things that will work well for me in terms of hair and skin care and body care so here are a few that I’ve been using for a while.

1. Eye makeup remover

This Bottle is an Etude bottle but the product is actually the Neutrogena oil free makeup remover. I only put it in here because the Neutrogena bottle has an open top when you unscrew the bottle so a lot more product comes out if you’re not careful. This Etude bottle had eyemakeup remover in it as well but I didn’t like it so I emptied it and used it for this because it has a stopper at the top of the bottle opening with a small hole in the middle so you’re getting a little flow of product as opposed to dumping the product on your cotton puff. I really like this product because I’ve found that it removes everything without stinging. It does feel oily when you wipe your eye makeup but it washes off easily.

2. Hair serum & Heat Protectant Spray

I use the Pantene line in medium thick hair and these two are awesome. The first one is a smoothing crème that comes in a pump. I usually do one pump and run it through the ends of my hair before blow drying and it keeps my nice and not tough feeling. The heat protectant spray is also nice because it doesn’t smell like chemicals and it’s a lightweight bottle and easy to maneuver around the back of my head.

3. Body wash

I just recently started using this but I love it! The smell is amazing and refreshing! I usually use fruity smelling body wash like Dove but I’ve wanted a different more low key fresh and nice smell that didn’t smell like laundry and I think this one fits the bill perfectly. It’s kind of expensive at $7 but it’s really my taste so I’ll definitely repurchase. And I like that it comes in a pump instead of the usual squeeze bottles because then I can just pump some into a loofah and I’m good to go!

4. Contact case

I got this from Target a few months ago and I’m really liking it. It’s different than the usual ones with the twisting caps because it has the openings on the side and you just flip it open. Its convienient because when you’re tired and taking out your contacts you just have to hold one side down and flip open the cover on the other side whereas the other cases make you twist two caps. I just like that it’s quicker. On another note though, it is definitely not a travel safe lenses case because it will spill. It’s best for just sitting on top of your bathroom counter. It’s not a tight enough close so if you just tip it on the side, the solution will spill out. That really is the only con about this product but it’s like I’m always traveling or sleeping somewhere else so it works fine for me.

5. Makeup removing cleanser

Lastly is the Neutrogena makeup removing cleanser on the left. I used to use the Clean& Clear one until they discontinued it and then I went back to wipes but just found that they didn’t cut it. I would use the wipes, use a regular anti-blemish cleanser and then wipe my face with a clean towel and I’d find foundation streaks on it so I knew that I had to use a cleanser to get off makeup when I do a full face. First I found the Neutrogena one on the right and tried it out. It’s a makeup removing cleanser but for acne prone skin and it works fine but it had a chemical type smell and I just didn’t like the way it felt. So then I found this other Neutrogena one on the left called the one step gentle cleanser and decided to try it out and fell in love with it! It’s sort of milky and gentle and smells much better. It also gets off every last bit of makeup on my face so I’m really glad I finally found a replacement for my Clean&Clear one.

And that, is the last of my current favorite products.

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Recent Purchaes – 5/20/11 The Deals Keep coming – Ulta, Books & Target

After my PF coupon run, I decided to take advantage of some more sales on Friday so I went to my closest ulta with the intent to buy three Revlon lipsticks because they had a buy 2 get one free sale. I also knew that this week Walgreens would be having Revlon on sale for 40% off but I did some calculations and found that it would be cheaper to do this deal at Ulta because I also had $5 to exchange back in.

So first, I got three lipsticks in Nude attitude, Stormy pink and sky pink, all mattes. I also have been wanting to get a new colorstay foundation in a lighter shade because natural tan is too dark so I calculated the price per foundation using three stores. At Target they were $10 on sale for $9 each. At Walgreens they were $13 on sale for $7.80 a piece with the 40% off. At Ulta they were $12 a piece but with the buy 2 get one free deal it would be $24 dividde by 3 = $8. So I thought I’d just wait for the Walgreens sale and buy it from there because it was cheapest at $7.80 but then I walked around Ulta and found a little display with this same foundation and each foundation had an instant save $3 off coupon on it! Which means that If I bought three, it would take each foundation from $12 to $9 and then using the buy 2 get one free, I’d end up paying around $6 per item instead! I was so excited until I saw that they didn’t have the shades I wanted to try on the display because they were out.

So what did I do? Drive across town to the other Ulta of course! I also tried the three lipsticks in the car and was not feeling stormy pink and nude attitude so I exchanged them again for two other colors in siren and primrose pink.

L to R: Siren (creme,) sky pink (matte,) and primrose pink (crème)

I got siren for my sister because we were looking for a morange dupe. It actually comes pretty close except for its not as pigmented in one swipe. Sky pink is a nice light pink. For a matte, it comes on quite sheer. Primrose is my favorite, a light purply pink that comes on nicely.

Then of course I found the foundations at the 2nd Ulta in my color and bought three, two in medium beige and one in natural beige which is lighter. I figure medium beige would match more so I got two of those. Also if they didn’t match, I can always return them for darker colors later. I also ended up paying only $5 per bottle because when Ulta took the 3rd product off, they took off the orginal price of $11.99 instead of the price I paid with the coupon.

The odd thing about these is that they come in two versions, dry and normal & combo and oily. The colors in the combo and oily version all seem lighter than the same colors in the dry version which I found weird but after trying medium beige on my skin I found it wasn’t as light as I thought it would be and it matched perfectly.

I also stopped by half priced books to pick up some reads for my plane ride and I found 8 in the clearance section for $1 each!

And then I had two coupons for $2 off Revlon top speed nail polish from Target so I stopped by Target to get two. I got an orangey one and a purply pink one. I got them each for $3 a piece.

The colors are the last two on the right but I took a shot of the other two because I wanted to show you guys the similarity between the Revlon cupid and the elf one I got last time. They look almost the same right? It’s sort of a bummer, I really thought the Revlon one would be more purply and less pink.

Well that’s it for my deals in makeup over the weekend!

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] Recent NYX Swatches – NYX round lipsticks

I was organizing my stuff yesterday so I decided to do a quick lip swatch of some of my recent NYX round lipsticks.

Here is the arm swatch. This is without flash and the colors actually look closer to this than the lip swatches.

Here is Orange Soda. I forgot to get one with flash but basically it looks white on my lips.

Here’s pumpkin pie. It’s like orange soda but much more wearable.

Here’s Thalia. In person it’s darker. It’s like a purply, grey brown.

Here’s Power. It’s like a crazier version of Thalia. It’s like a light purple with brownish undertones.

Here’s Frappucino. I didn’t swatch b52 because it basically looks the same but a little more dark. In person Frappucino looks darker than this. It’s a brownish nude.

Here’s Iced Coffee and its actually a jumbo lip pencil. In person its not so pink. Its very nude brown.

Next is Tea. It actually looks pretty close to the flash one. It’s just more brown.

Here’s fig. I don’t have this on the arm swatch but this is a really cute bright pink.

And finally here’s electra. Neither of the pictures below really show how it is. It’s a classic red with a slightly darker tone. I really like it!

Again, these pictures don’t really show the true shade of the colors because my camera and lighting are not great but I tried my best to describe the shade and tone of the colors. My favorites are fig, iced coffee, thalia and frappucino.

♡ PaNhia

[ ♡ ] This just in – Makeupgeek brush!

A few days ago I ordered a brush from makeupgeek in a spur of the moment decision and I just got it in today. I was actually watching a youtube video by her about her favorite foundations and she was demonstrating how she uses a brush to apply the foundation and I was intrigued by the brush in the video so I clicked to her post on her blog and eventually figured out the brush was actually one of her own. I didn’t even know she sold her own brushes. So I thought I’d give it a try and ordered it.

I paid about $15 for it plus almost $5 in shipping and handling.

Except for when I got my package, I saw this:

Shipping was actually only $2.09 so basically they’re saying it cost them $3 to grab it off a shelf and throw it in a box! Seriously? That takes like 10 minutes tops. I know her online store isn’t big enough to warrant a warehouse so all this stuff must be in close proximity. I ordered it earlier this week and got it today so it probably wasn’t a chore to get it packaged and sent. So I guess I paid an extra $3 to get it promptly? I just hate when people overcharge for shipping, at least hide it from me.

Anyways, onto the actual product:

It came in a little box with packing popcorn. The brush was incased in a little plastic baggie type thing.

Here’s the notes that comes with it:

I don’t usually wash brushes before use because I don’t have the patience to do it and wait for it to dry before trying it out.

I got the MUG Deluxe foundation stippling brush and its actually version two of the brush. They still sell the first one at a few dollars cheaper but the website said this new one has softer bristles so I ordered this one instead.

The bristles are definitely soft, sort of like the brushes made of goat hair. In the pictures, the brush looks very dense and thick but in person its actually not as thick as I’d like. Its still thicker than the Mac Stippling brush and most others I’ve tried but not thick enough.

Here it is next to a permanent marker for length comparison:

Its slightly longer but as a brush it’s on the short side. I tend to favor longer brushes.

I pulled out my elf professionals powder brush to compare the two because its very similar. It’s got a flat top as well.

The interesting thing is the elf one is longer (the perfect length) and actually much more dense than the MUG one. If you look at the second picture you can see that the top is wider in diameter as well. In terms of performance I don’t know how each fare because I haven’t used the MUG one and I haven’t used the elf one for foundation or liquids yet so I don’t know but from what I see so far, save your money and get the elf one from your local target because its seriously the same thing if not better.

I guess I’m still on the hunt for a nice, soft, dense stippling brush for my foundation.

♡ PaNhia