Category Archives: Reviews

BECCA Sunlit Bronzers (Review & Swatches)

BECCA Sunlit Bronzers

Oh BECCA – you certainly know the way to my heart! They (relatively) recently launched their Sunlit Bronzer range that boasts five shades to suit every skintone.

BECCA Sunlit Bronzers
BECCA Sunlit Bronzers

BECCA indicates that these are neutral bronzers with a hint of shimmer. At first glance I was absolutely convinced that these were matte bronzers, so I was curious as to how the Shimmering Skin Perfector formula (which was made infamous by their highlighters) was going to work embedded in their bronzers. Turns out the shimmer is very, very subtle and not at all reflective like their highlighters. (Phew!)

BECCA Sunlit Bronzers
BECCA Sunlit Bronzers

The packaging, of course, mirrors their highlighters and I love that about BECCA – It’s a solid compact with a very different feel to everything else on the market. While their highlighters have a gunmetal, mirrored finish, these Sunlit Bronzers embody the essence of a bronzer and jazz it up by making the compact a deep bronze shade.

BECCA Sunlit Bronzer swatches in Bali Sands and Capri Coast
BECCA Sunlit Bronzer swatches in Bali Sands and Capri Coast

BECCA indicates that each of the five bronzers was inspired by an actual beach. And having just been to Bali, I was tickled pink to discover that Bali Sands was their palest shade. Capri Coast is the next level up and you can see it a few shades deeper than Bali Sands. What I also love in these swatches is that you can definitely see the hint of shimmer that it gives off on the skin. I need to point out that these are not flecks of glitter and they will not make you look like a shimmer bomb went off on your face. I don’t have the next three shades because they’d likely be too dark for my skin ton, but the one after Capri Coats is called Bronzed Bondi and, of course, NOW I WANT IT because I was just at Bondi Beach last month!

Wearing BECCA Sunlit Bronzer in Capri Coast
Wearing BECCA Sunlit Bronzer in Capri Coast

In these shots I’m wearing Capri Coast on my temples, the backs of my cheekbones and along my jawline (I have no blush or highlighter on yet so as to show off the bronzer properly). As I’ve got a very faint hint of tan (literally from Bali and Australia), Capri Coast is the perfect shade for me right now. It adds colour without being too much and it blends smoothly on top of my foundation.

Wearing BECCA Sunlit Bronzer in Capri Coast
Wearing BECCA Sunlit Bronzer in Capri Coast

I think the colour is flawless for me – it adds a hint of warmth but it doesn’t turn me orange. I’ve loved it so much since I started using it, that we’re going on two weeks now and I’m pretty sure we’re in a serious, committed relationship because I haven’t yet reached for another bronzer in my collection. I did try Bali Sands once, but it was a bit too pale for my me at the moment. It will, however, be the perfect shade for me throughout the winter months as I pale out.

If you’d like to see some of the deeper shades, definitely check out Nancy’s review of the full collection over on spiffykerms.com. You can see just how deep the shade range goes, and since she’s a bit darker than me, she can carry off the deeper shades much better. I especially love the red tones in the deepest shade – Maui Nights. So beautiful!

Final Thoughts

Do I love these? Yes. A hundred times yes! The BECCA Sunlit Bronzers are absolutely wonderful and I love that the range (to my eyes) appears to be deep enough that even the fairest person and the deepest person could wear at least one of these shades. I adore the textured pattern on the powder (don’t we all!) as well as the compact itself, but it really comes down to the product and I really do love it. The fact that I haven’t reached for another bronzer in two weeks says a lot. I love me some bronzer and I’m usually always switching it up, but if you look back on my recent videos – in the description box – it’s the only bronzer I’ve been consistently wearing!

The BECCA Sunlit Bronzers can be purchased on sephora.ca for $46 CAD each or on sephora.com for $38 USD each.

The products featured in this post were sent to me for consideration. Post contains some affiliate links.

Holiday 2017: Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man (Review & Swatches)

Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man

For the second year in a row, Too Faced has launched a limited edition Melted Matte in a holiday-themed format. Last year they launch the Melted Matte in Candy Cane and I loved it so, so much. This year? We’re getting Gingerbread Man!

Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man
Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man

They’ve kept with the theme of the special Melted Matte launch and given it a packaging boost. The outer packaging has a tiny printed gingerbread man and the notation that it’s gingerbread scented and limited edition.

Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man
Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man

The tube itself is your standard Melted Matte hard acrylic packaging, but the cap has cute little gingerbread men all over it. Cutesy? Absolutely, but I love it!

Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man
Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man

The formula is on par with all of the Melted Mattes I’ve tried in the past (Summer 2017 shades here, original launch here) which is to say that the texture is slightly thicker than some of the liquid lipsticks I’ve tried in the past. The coverage is completely opaque in one swipe (seriously, this colour is so, SO saturated in pigment) and it dries down relatively fast although you do have time to perfect your lip line without causing yourself any kind of panic! Although this product did not dry out my lips overall, it is on the drying side and you will notice a that it stays put a lot better in areas where your lips don’t get wet (the outer corners of my lips are always an issue for me personally).

Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man - swatch
Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man – swatch

When I originally looked at the box of the product, I was really worried that Gingerbread Man would be too brown for my tastes. Regardless, I wanted it and picked it up immediately. I was relieved to discover it’s actually a beautiful terracotta shade. Gingerbread Man is a very warm, rustic brown and thankfully not the colour of the gingerbread men my mom has made in the past (which, while delicious, were also more of a pukey brown shade). This is a warm, cozy colour that feels oh-so-right for the cooler months and holiday season!

Wearing Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man
Wearing Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man

As for the gingerbread scent… well, no. It is scented with some kind of sweet, frosting-like taste and smell, but it’s not what I would associate with gingerbread. However, I’m fine with it – I wasn’t really sure how well a gingerbread smell would translate and I’m glad it doesn’t ACTUALLY smell like gingerbread because I feel like that’d be a little offputting. Last year’s launch was supremely peppermint scented – so much so that when I licked my lips throughout the day I was basically getting a shot of peppermint. This one isn’t as flavourful, although the taste doesn’t go away completely.

Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man - lip swatch
Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man – lip swatch

I love that Too Faced didn’t come out with a basic red (nor did they last year) and instead opted for something a little bit more unique. I really, REALLY like this idea of coming out with a new Melted Matte every year for the holidays and I hope they keep this trend going for many more years to come. And of course, I’m always super happy when Too Faced scents their product with something sweet – it really adds to the experience of putting on my makeup for me. I know it’s not for everyone, but it really does make me happy!

The Too Faced Melted Matte in Gingerbread Man is available on sephora.com for $21 USD. I did get mine on sephora.ca, but it doesn’t seem to be listed there right now. Check back in a few days though… I imagine they’ll do a restock!

So let me know if you’re going to be picking up this shade! I’m already curious about what they’ll come out with next year!

This post contains affiliate links.

Swatch Sunday: Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture + My Thoughts

Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette

I’m not going to mince my words with this one – I hated the Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette. I was so, SO excited to get my hands on it – I snapped it up the day it was released on Sephora. I started to use the very next morning… only to discover that this palette doesn’t hold a candle to its predecessor – the Modern Renaissance palette.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette

While I don’t normally turn my swatch posts into review posts, I did want to talk a bit about this palette since I won’t be doing a full on review or video about it. Where the Modern Renaissance was dusty and kicked up fallout when you stuck your brush into it, it at least had the ability to stick to your eyelid and blend out beautifully. The Subculture palette has none of those things. The kick up is more intense than the MR palette and it has zero ability to stick to your lid without getting blended away into nothingness. The primary thing that this palette lacks is binding agents that are going to get this to stick to your skin, and really, there isn’t a whole lot we, as consumers, can do to cure that.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette

I’ve heard the arguments in favour of calling this a “pressed pigment” palette or “this if for makeup professionals”. Pardon my language, but that’s way too much fucking bullshit for my liking. ABH is not a pro-geared brand, nor was this marketed as palette that was for MUAs. It also was NEVER MENTIONED that this was a pressed pigment palette. The only things we heard in the adverts for this palette was that it was the new sister to the Modern Renaissance palette, that it had a more nighttime vibe, and that if we loved MR, we would love Subculture just as much.

And frankly, I don’t. I tried two eye looks the morning after I got this and it looked like I had no idea how to apply eyeshadow. Some people may not like my technique, but I think we can all agree that I didn’t start wearing eyeshadow yesterday and therefore I shouldn’t look like I threw powder at my lids and expected it to stick there. I didn’t photograph the looks because I had no time that morning (although Snapchat did see my utter failure there! (my snap is muyourmind)) and it just wasn’t worth it. I returned the palette that same day and said good riddance.

I wanted to love it, I thought the colours were gorgeous and I loved how many mattes there were. But it wasn’t the promised sister to MR, and I wanted nothing to do with it. However, if you love the colours, I’d encourage you to check out JustEnufEyes’ video on duping the Subculture palette with Inglot shadows.

So the swatches are below in case you want to see them, but please keep in mind that, as always, swatches never tell the whole story. These look super pigmented, because they are, but they lack the blendability we all look for in an eyeshadow.

If you’d like to try your own luck with this palette, it can be purchased at sephora.ca for $55 CAD or on sephora.com for $42 USD.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture Swatches

Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Cube
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Cube
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Dawn
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Dawn
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Destiny
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Destiny
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Adorn
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Adorn
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - All Star
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – All Star
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Mercury
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Mercury
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Axis
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Axis
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Roxy
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Roxy
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Electric
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Electric
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Fudge
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Fudge
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - New Wave
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – New Wave
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Untamed
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Untamed
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Edge
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Edge
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture - Rowdy
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture – Rowdy
Post may contain affiliate links.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks (Review & Swatches)

Brand new to Estee Lauder is their 30-colour range of the Pure Color Love lipsticks. Ranging from “ulta mattes to shimmer pearls, cool chromes and edgy cremes”, the colour lineup has a blissful diversity that doesn’t seem too heavy in any area. There are loads of nudes, heaps of brights, and plenty of deep shades.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks
Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks

Perhaps the most bizarre thing about this range is the shape of the lipstick bullet. I don’t even know what to call it – chisel edge point? X-acto knife? Like what the heck even is that? It comes to a sharp point as both sides are exactly identical – a steep vertical slant to the end of the lipstick bullet. One thing’s for sure – I don’t like the shape. Sure, it’s edgy, unique, whatever the heck else you want to call it, but it’s not for me. I’m currently trying to wear the lipstick down in the shape *I* want. Which means a heck of a lot of wear on one side of it – and yet I can never remember which size I’m wearing it down! ARGH!

Weird shape aside, the lipsticks themselves are quite lovely – which is really the whole point of the product now isn’t it? The packaging is a pull out tube with a lovely satisfying snap closure. It’s a weighty product, which to me has always meant luxury.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks swatches - Orchid Infinity, Bar Red and Flash Chill
Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks swatches – Orchid Infinity, Bar Red and Flash Chill

I was gifted an interesting variety of shades at the Pure Color Love launch event:

  • Orchid Infinity – an edgy cream
  • Bar Red – an ultra matte
  • Flash Chill – a shimmer pearl

The colours were pre-selected for us, but I like how they approached the selection as it gave me the chance to try out a variety of finishes.

Wearing Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Orchid Infinity
Wearing Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Orchid Infinity

Of the three I tried, Orchid Infinity, the edgy cream, was the shade I had the most issues with. It required a few layers to get opaque coverage, however it whenever it wore away, it melted away on my lips nicely – no nasty edge that looks like you applied lip liner wrong (and heavily). The formula was smooth and creamy – almost slippery.

Wearing Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Bar Red
Wearing Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Bar Red

Bar Red, an ultra matte, was my favourite out of the three in this post. Although pegged as an ultra matte, this was not drying on my lips. It went on smoothly – albeit stiffly at first since I had to break through that initial layer (why are mattes like this?) – and afterwards it was smooth to apply. Pigmentation was on point and it such’s a glorious colour – your true red, or “Christmas red” as I tend to think of shades like this. This shade and formula can do no wrong as far as I’m concerned.

Wearing Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Flash Chill
Wearing Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Flash Chill

Flash Chill was the last shade I tried and the one I was the least interested in. But isn’t that the way it always goes before we discover a new shade that we suddenly love? Granted, Flash Chill looks very similar on my lips to plenty of coral shades I’ve been in love with over the years, but in the bullet I wasn’t convinced it would come out this nicely. I stand corrected however and Flash Chill is gorrrrgeous! It’s a peach that turns coral on my lips with some gold flecks of glitter splashed in for good measure. The glitter isn’t gritty, but it will stick to your lips a little longer than the lipstick will, so re-application will be necessary. (Which is fine – layering with all three of these lipsticks was absolutely fine and caused no issues.)

Final Thoughts

In order of finish preference for the Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks, the ultra matte was by far my favourite. Super comfortable to wear and gorgeous pigmentation. Second was the shimmer pearl – it’s a lot of fun and there’s a glimmer of sparkle in the partial translucency of the colour. The cream was sadly my least favourite, but I think it may be partially because of the colour. Purples are a bastard in the makeup world, and this colour did suffer from some patchiness. That being said, the texture and feel of it was really, really nice, so you may fare better with a less volatile pigment.

In short, yes – I’d absolutely recommend these!

The Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipsticks are available exclusively in Canada via www.beautyboutique.ca where they retail for… actually I can’t tell you. This is really bizarre – I’m positive they’re available on www.beautyboutique.ca but the entire domain seems to be blocked in Australia (where I’m currently writing this post). Not sure why that is!