Saturday, 17 December 2011

NYX butt "naked" eyes Palette - a Review with swatches

There has been a great hype over "nude and naked" makeup looks possibly since the inception of the ever famous Naked palette by Urban Decay and NYX has given it's share with products like the Nude on Nude palette and the Nude on Nude kit which came out last year I believe. I recently came across this pretty little palette/kit while browsing though Cherry Culture and of course, being a NYX lover and a lover of all colours nude I had to buy this one!!

Front of packaging
Back of packaging with product info
Palette lid with the much commented about name :)
Bottom of palette with ingredients listed

So starting with the basics, the palette is sleek and glossy black with nude coloured writing on it. It is approx. 14.3cm x 10.8cm in size and is 2cm thick. Inside it you get a variety of eye shadows as well as blushers and contouring shades. The package includes: a good sized mirror - the size of the box basically and two sections. The top section contains the "15 cherry picked eye shadows" as NYX states on their packaging along with 2 double-ended sponge applicators. The second section is a pull-out drawer which contains 4 blushers, 1 bronzer and 2 face illuminators - "for the most natural "naked" look!" as NYX says.

Opened palette - pic with no flash
pic with flash
Being a "naked" look palette, the shades of the eye shadows are of course on the neutral end. However there are some darker more dramatic shades which make this palette very versatile. I would describe them as pastel colours. There is a mix of shimmery and matte colours with more shades being on the shimmery side, however the shimmer is quite subtle and not exaggerated. There is only 1 shade that sparkles in a way that I would call glittery and it is still very pretty. The shades range from a shimmery white, to neutral flesh tones, light pinks, lilac, silver tones, greys, beiges, browns, a black shade and a glittery dark purple shade. I shade in particular I find very intriguing is a shimmery pink shade that is almost opalescent and looks golden when applied (see swatches and pics below). Thus this palette caters for cool and warm toned individuals very well. The pans are approx. 2.6cm in diameter. In terms of pigmentation over all I cannot complain. Most of them particularly the shimmery ones are quite pigmented, one or two of them are slightly less pigmented and possibly slightly on the chalky chalky. However they are very blendable and very creamy to the touch on the whole. I used a couple of them to create one look and they were very easy to work with and the result was stunning.

pic with flash
close up with flash
no flash
Bottom row swatches
Middle row swatches
Top row swatches

In terms of face colours then, there are 4 blushers each approx. 3x3cm. 2 shades are warm toned and 2 are cool toned with 1 of each being matte and another slightly shimmery. The pigmentation on these is quite adequate with the matte pink being the most pigmented of the lot.

The bronzer and face illuminators are each 4.4x4.4cm approx. The bronzer is a matte one while the illuminators are both shimmery, one being a light yellowish shade and the other a more pinky beige shade. Pigmentation on the illuminators is not excessive however they are buildable. The bronzer is quite sheer too but I personally like it as you do not risk putting too much colour at once and looking like an oompa loompa!

pic with flash

no flash
Blushers swatches
Bronzer and illuminators swatches

The quality of the packaging is actually very good. The box feels quite solid and doesn't feel like it's made of cheap plastic that will break easily. I like the big mirror inside and the fact that you get 2 double ended sponge applicators - it's great for travelling.
double ended sponge applicators

size comparison - e.l.f. 32 piece palette - NYX butt "naked" eyes palette
Look done using shades from this palette - please ignore the untamed eyebrows

Over all, I think that this palette is worth buying. For the price of approx €20 (from Cherry Culture) you get 15 lovely eye shadows which are quite good in terms of quality and you get 4 blusher shades of a decent size with a matte selection which is great!! You also get a MATTE bronzer (something you don't always get) and 2 illuminators.

I can say that I am happy with my purchase for the time being and would recommend it to anyone who loves natural soft looks or wants a neutral palette for work/office looks and wants a cheap alternative to the more expensive nude looks palettes and doesn't mind the "butt naked" name of the palette.. haha... I still think NYX could have been a little bit more original and chosen another name for it though.... I feel like it is an obvious try at imitating the once original name of the UD Naked palette. This does in no way make it less of an awesome palette that you should try though :)

Hope you enjoyed this review... let me know what you think if you purchased this yourself or if you have any questions about it ;)

Monday, 5 December 2011

Super Cheap Makeup Brush Guards Review!

I just had to write this post when I recieved these brush guards today! For those of you who do not know, brush guards are little plastic netting tubes that you put your brushes in while drying, travelling or just for everyday storage to keep them nice and firm and stop them from turning into a bushy mess...

This is especially useful if you spend loads of money on makeup brushes or even if you have a few brushes you would like to take care of, regardless of their price. I do not own too many expensive brushes but I still have quite a collection and like to take care of them.

Now, as you may know, there is a genuine Brush Guard brand you can buy that has various sizes from very thin ones for small eye brushes to larger ones for kabukis. Granted, it's a  good thing that you get all the varying sizes, however, to be very honest with you I think that they are kind of expensive.

The cheapest variety pack I found on ebay coasts €9.90 (incl. shipping to Malta) and it contains 6 brush guards - 1 extra small, 2 small, 2 medium and 1 large. It can be found from this seller here: . Now this is quite a reasonable price in reality when compared to other sellers on ebay. You can also purchase these from Coastal Scents and they cost about €10.86 (incl. shipping to Malta) from there.

I am in no way saying they are no good. They are probably superior in quality to the ones I bought, however, I still feel that paying €10 for 6 flimsy plastic tubes is somewhat expensive.

And here is the alternative.....

I looked up brush guards on ebay and came across this seller: . This seller sells a pack of 15 brush guards for the awesome price of €1.43 (incl. FREE shipping to Malta). Note however, that they only come in 1 size unlike the original Brush Guard variety pack. It does say however that they will still fit the smallest brushes you have and from what I can see it is quite true. It fit my MAC 219 (pencil brush) perfectly and even fit my huge e.l.f. Body Kabuki!! (See pics below for evidence!)  I am quite impressed in fact I ordered again to keep them as backup!

As I said I am in no way saying that the genuine brush guards are no good, I never tried them and they probably are superior to the ones I got here but when you compare the price..... weeeellll... superior or not I think I will stick to these for now!

What do you think? Did you purchase any of the genuine Brush Guard Packs? 

With just one pack I covered all these brushes (including 3 duo fibre ones in the brush holder).

They fit even the smallest of brushes - maybe not too tightly but still well enough to protect them.

They fit kabukis perfectly too!

They fit all shapes of larger brushes

Awesome for duo fibre brushes.

They are ideal for travelling to keep those particularly large fluffy brushes safe in your brush roll.

Each pack contains 15 brush guards of the same universal size.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Review: e.l.f. cosmetics - 100pc Eye Shadow Palette - with photos and swatches

I finally got my hands on the e.l.f. cosmetics 100pc Eye Shadow Palette which can be bought from their website: if you are in the UK or EU or if you are in the US or other countries.

In all honesty I was somewhat hesitant at first since I already have their 32pc palettes in Natural and Bright and thought it would be the same colours all over again. However I was quite pleasantly surprised :)  (see pics below)

In terms of size: the palette is 19cm in height by 23cm in width. The eye shadow pans which are all the same size are 1.7cm x 2.1cm.

The 100 colours are a mixture of matte, silky and shimmery shades. They are quite creamy in texture and a good number of them are quite pigmented! There are a few shades that could have been more pigmented and slightly less chalky but over all, especially when you consider the price, I think it's great value for money. I would definitely recommend using a primer beneath them to improve the colour and staying power as with other e.l.f cosmetics eye shadows.

You get a nice combination of neutral highlight colours, yellows, golds and browns, greens and a few blues, pinks and purples and oranges and reds and a whole column of white, greys and blacks. I would say the focus is one neutrals and pinks judging by the number of those shades. All in all, this palette is very versatile, providing you with shades for basically ANY eye look under the sun from a basic work friendly neutral to a dark dramatic smokey look for a night out.

Another think I would like to point out is that the shades, while quite similar to some in the 32pc palettes, are in fact NOT the same which is great! :)

Packaging is not too bad either, the box it comes in looks nice. The actual palette is made of plastic but the kind of plastic it's made of feels a bit flimsy at times, I'm scared I'll drop it some day and break it :( and the hinges are quite small for a palette of it's size... I fear they could break easily.

The palette also comes with a small mirror and 2 double ended sponge applicators which is nice :)

My verdict:
Price: Excellent... especially if bought during sale period like I did ;)
Quality: Very good average.... especially considering the price and the colour range you get
Packaging: Not too impressive... I think the quality of the plastic used could improve as well as the hinges.
Would I repurchase: If I EVER finish all these shades... I think I would!

See pics below:

Palette in packaging - Front

Palette in packaging - Back

Front look of palette - closed

Palette open - you can see how small the hinges are to hold the lid which is quite large in comparison

Mirror and sponge applicators

Some swatches of the shades - nice colour payoff

The e.l.f. 32pc Bright Palette - which I love :)

The e.l.f. 32pc Natural Palette - which I also love :)

I hope you enjoyed this review and find it useful while deliberating whether or not to buy this palette :)

As always, I bought this palette myself and am totally honest in this review.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Evening look

Dark rimmed smokey eyes with neutral cheeks and lips

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Saturday, 26 November 2011

e.l.f. nail polish in Mod Mauve review & pictures - one week of wear update!

So I finally got down to writing my first ever blog post. There are so many things I would like to write about but I decided to start with this e.l.f. nail polish review first as I got my nails done last night while watching Killer Elite with my fiance haha so here it goes.

The e.l.f Mod Mauve nail polish is a lovely creme nail colour that goes on smoothly and does not streak in my opinion. It is quite pigmented (not very sheer on the nails) but I would still suggest 2 coats to get a totally even coverage and to achieve the true colour as seen through the bottle.

Mauve is supposed to be a moderate grayish violet to moderate reddish purple according to dictionaries. I would consider this shade to be a pinkish brown shade... like a rosey mauve shade. In fact, I think it matches a Max Factor Colour Elixir lipstick in 833 Rosewood perfectly for those of you who like the matching lips and nails trend ;) 

Bottom line, I think this is a lovely colour for autumn/winter. I think it would look good on most skin tones, it looks just fine on my beige/yellow undertones skin. Regarding staying power and chipping, from my experience with other e.l.f. nail polishes I think it should not be a problem. Most colours last up to a week with no extreme chipping (assuming you use a top coat and a base coat like I do)

Would I repurchase? Yes definitely... it's great value for the price and works just fine as a creme nail polish even when compared to more expensive brands like OPI.

Comparison to other browns and pinky browns: L to R: OPI Barefoot in Barcelona - e.l.f. Mod Mauve - e.l.f. Smokey Brown

e.l.f. Mod Mauve with a swatch of MF Colour Elixir Lipstick in Rosewood 833

Hope you find this useful and if you're thinking of buying any e.l.f. nail polishes or other items, do so this weekend if you are in the UK or Europe... don't miss out on their 4th Birthday offer.
For those of you interested, I buy most OPI shades from ebay from various sellers as I find them to be cheaper usually from the USA or Singapore. The Max Factor lipstick was purchased from as they are cheaper from the UK too and they now have free postage to Malta at least for sure!

Please note, I bought this nail polish myself and am being totally honest in my review of it ;)

After a whole week of wear with absolutely no touch ups, not even a reapplication of top coat or spray - nothing, my nails looked like this:

As you can see, there is some wearing round the edges and at the cuticle however, if you ask me, it is very much comparable if not better than some of the OPI shades I have. Therefore for all of you who like me, where a little bit hesitant about buying e.l.f. nail polishes because you might think that they are too good to be true.... they ARE good! Bear in mind however that I did use a base coat - OPI Nail Envy Maintainance and a top coat - OPI Top Coat but I believe any decent base coat and topcoat would do! With the price of 1 OPI shade you can get about 5 e.l.f. shades! I'm not saying I will stop buying OPI mind you, they have loads of beautiful shades and they are of excellent quality but if you're a bit tight on cash and still want a new shade, e.l.f nail polish is an excellent substitute! Good luck! ;)

Thursday, 17 November 2011

And so it begins...

After practically a whole year of deliberation I have finally created this blog... big deal! I know... but that's me!

Anyway, my plan is to use this blog to share all things makeup related as well as some other important stuff going on in my life :)

I hope you enjoy going through this blog as it actually start to get filled with some of my posts. Feel free to leave any comments or suggestions!