Sunday, 20 April 2014

The Beauty Spotlight Team: 15 Questions with 15 Minute Beauty

It's 15 Minute Beauty's turn to answer some questions, so of course she's answering 15 of them!  Head over to see why she still can't really smell chocolate (really) and if she's a gloss or lipstick girl!

Friday, 18 April 2014

Finished on Friday...

Pans of the Week
Addiction cheekstick in Amazing (first reviewed/acquired way back in 2011)
Guerlain Rouge Automatique in Chamade (which is, despite my greater affection for Liu, my most-worn Rouge Auto -- a step up / rose from 'my lips but better' (comparison swatches), so presumably 'my lips but WAY BETTARRRRRR MATEY'
and Suqqu Blend Eyeshadow 09 Koju (long discontinued, much loved -- included today because despite hitting pan on it a while back I've only just today had to face the fact that the warm grey (top right pan) really is more finished than merely panned D: So long, my perfect grey palette! It's been a glorious five years :')

Another Pan of the Week (ho ho, seewhatididthere)

Grapefruit pull-apart sweet bread, adapted from this recipe. The changes I made were motivated by necessity -- I used the zest of two pink grapefruits (so cheap and juicy at the farmers' market last week) to replace the orange/lemon in the original; used a mix of 2:1 light to dark muscovado sugars for the sprinkle; and substituted mascarpone for the cream cheese for icing. Also ate leftover icing from bowl after drizzling. Wait, who said that. I did no such thing. *shifty eyes*

Some process pics since the original recipe is a bit wall-of-text even for me (can't see a glasshouse without wanting to lob a rock at it, me...)
loaf ingredients; sugar crumble; my juicy grapefruits (don't ask to see my melons, this aint that kind of blog)
yeasty and nubile after its first rise (check out gothic novel and knitting pattern in background -- multitasking, yo
the faffing around bit with layering: check out how embarrassingly un-rectangular my rectangles are -- 0 artistic bone in body as I keep telling youse
all assembled -- I poured over all the leftover melted butter over the top before putting it into the oven
just out of the oven: check out that golden butter crust :O~~~
iced and um... torn. I wanted to see if the tearing mechanism worked properly. For science.
Actually, not only did this come out less pull-apart than fall-apart bread, an extra layer of fail was added by the fact that we somehow managed to eat the WHOLE ENTIRE LOAF for breakfast during, um, tasting. So that whole '14 servings' bit in the original recipe? *hollow laughter followed by citrussy belch*

Happy Easter Weekend, everyone! I've got to rustle up another of these tonight XD

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Korean lipstick series: Laneige Serum Intense LR08 Flare Magenta

Making a virtue of my continued eyeshadow-neglect (dammit, spring! stop it with the pollen already), I present the first in a series (remember my epic gift card Innisfree haul?) of Korean lipstick reviews!

Laneige Serum Intense is a new formula launched for spring 2014, with twenty vibrant shades and incorporating a so-called 'LED pigment downsizing technology' ( translate?) to guarantee true, clear colour in an unctuous, high-glide base.

The shade I was sent to try is one of the four headliners, LR08 Flare Magenta (sometimes mis-Anglicised as 'Flair Magenta' even on the official site/packaging), which is a clear, briiiight, hot pink, with, I actually do think, a true-to-copy, novel way of suspending pigment that makes for a lit-from-within 'LED' brightness. (Distinct from either the clear or neon brights of the past, or the gleaming finishes of squishy jelly, classic gloss, or creamy lipstick, it's a quality I've only otherwise encountered in the new Dior Fluid Sticks, and I think a result of a genuine innovation.)

Hopefully these comparison swatches will illustrate this -- see how Mona Lisette and Flare Magenta share a common stained-glassiness? Distinct from the equally loud Guerlain Rouge G Girly, which has a more opaquely creamy brightness. Guerlain Rouge Autos in Reflex [LE Holiday 2013], with its white base, and Chamade, with its soft warm rosiness, look noticeably more muted in contrast (more pastel and soft respectively). In contrast, I said. I know these are all fairly eyeball-searing :D
all swatches one swipe, except for Mona Lisette, which is two (more for evenness than to build pigment)
As for warmth, a makeupalley poll came out inconclusive, and I still dunno what neutral-hyphenated? temperature to call it. However, to my eye/on my skin, Flare Magenta both swatches and applies true to tube, so let's just keep calling it HOT.
(Lunasol Sheer Glossy Eyes EX-01 Nuance Grey and EX-04 Peach Beige on eyes, Etude House Blueberry Cheesecake cream blush on cheeks.)

As you can tell, the texture is indeed a serum-like, gel-cream, which melts onto and glides effortlessly across the lips;  it borders on having too much slip for me; the formula doesn't bleed / sink into lines / migrate as the even slicker Visée Creamy Lipsticks did, but it can get a little messy on application and entail some cleanup of lipline edges with a q-tip or (as I prefer) a concealer brush. The lightweight, unsticky feel and stained-glass glossiness is very flattering on vertical liplines, giving a subtle plumping effect that looks more modern than a heavier lacquered-glossy finish.

Wear is pretty decent -- much better than you might expect from this glossy a formula. After a meal a strong, even stain is still evident -- Flare Magenta fades to a midtone pink-red. On my very dry, picky lips, this formula is very, very slightly drying, but that's easily mitigated by a thin layer of a waxy balm underneath (which is how I wear 99% of lipsticks), and the formula is pigmented enough not to be sheered out / muted down by a bit of balm.

Scent/taste: thankfully faint (most other Korean brands leave me reeling upon uncapping), slightly sweet and rosy, very quick to fade.

Packaging: the Serum Intense lipsticks come in a fairly sleek, no-nonsense twist-up silver inner tube encased in clear plastic, which again picks up the lit-from-within theme. All edges are slightly rounded, and it's neither obnoxiously heavy nor flimsily light.
shown here with one of the new Laneige quads in 6 Classy Mood, which I'll review another day

Head on to makeup-box for swatches of the full range -- any catch your eye? It's a vibrant lineup, very much in tune with the currently dominant Korean clean-face-bright-lips trend.

Disclosure: the Laneige products in this post were sent free of charge for consideration.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

The Beauty Spotlight Team: Weekend Links

Is Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in Strange Magic true love, or a true miss for Lola's Secret Beauty Blog ? How did it compare to Tom Ford Nude Vanilla?

Carrie from eyeliner on a cat shares her love of multi-tasking products in her Spring Skin Care Round-Up-- and she also has an exclusive discount code just for her readers!

Find out why Jessika from polish insomniac has fallen in LOVE with the new FingerPaints Pastel Rain collection!

The Pink Sith lives up to her moniker with her Top 10 PINK Lipsticks. Check out what made the list!

Mostly Sunny thinks technology really has made the world a better place! For example, with YSL Fuchsia Désinvolte Baby Doll Kiss & Blush, you can now use one product on your lips and cheeks and look fabulous for hours on end!

Prime Beauty visits the French Riveria, indulges in chocolate and gets a tan with no burn all with the Too Faced Limited Edition Bonjour Bronzing Wardrobe, a must-have for pale girls!

Beauty Info Zone wants you to rethink your Easter basket with Lush's Funny Bunny set. Look Ma, no cavities!

Win It!!! Head over to Pammy Blogs Beauty to find out how you can win a "Year's Supply" of Dove products!

Phyrra wants us to kick back and have a drink with the new Silk Naturals Happy Hour Spring 2014 collection!

drivel about frivol examines the evolution of a beauty junkie, through a selection of Kate's baby pictures, including baby's first FOTD. With wings.

As the cosmetic industry keeps upping it's game lip products continue to become more and more impressive. Perilously Pale shows us the new Lancome Lip Lover and what makes it such a standout on the market right now.

Want to plump? Your lips that is. 15 Minute Beauty has shared a luscious way to do so with Bliss Pout-O-Matic.

Sunday Face: Old & New

Just a quickie, inspired by a recent makeupalley 'neglected palettes' challenge. Though lately the combination of spring allergies and insane workload has meant that pretty much all my eyeshadows fall into the neglected category... much like this blog. Hmm :/

Anyway, here's a half-assed look and post :D

i.e. I grabbed some Shu Uemura pans from my long-discontinued 36-pan boutique palette (seriously, new Shu, it's been years since the Colour Atelier line launched, and you're still only offering refillable quads?!), threw in a discontinued second-gen Shu blush in P Red 14 (one of the few powder blushes I've kept, for sentimental reasons, though also because it's just so silky), and completed the look by cheating with a new acquisition, the gorgeous Surratt Lipslique in Rubis, a gift from the wonderful bellyhead, who has the full range swatched.
ME 126 and ME 786 are both from the Colour Atelier line, and currently available. The others are all discontinued: P 610 a first-gen turquoise veil, ME 471 a second-gen complex silvered-olive metallic [the current ME 471 is slightly drier and sheerer but tonally v. close] and platonic unicorn taupe ME Silver 945. Perfect. Undupeable. Trust me -- this is my fifth and final pan, and it's still the shadow against which I swatch all taupes.

P610 washed roughly all over lid up through sockets and under eyes. ME 786 patted over lid, blended out with ME 126 through socket; more ME 126 layered heavily over ME 786 as a base, blended up from the inner corner -- more colour accent than highlight. ME 945 used dry (!) to line, extended slightly straight out. On the lower lashline, ME 471 to line lower lashline, thinning towards the inner corner. Brainless, because I simply followed the natural contours of my sockets/eyelids/lashlines.

Also brainless: blush on cheeks, lipslique on lips.

Other products: Max Factor Clump Defy water-resistant mascara (nice but not spectacular), Suqqu brow powder 02 (dc), Shu Uemura Whitefficient UV Underbase Mousse Pink/Purple set with Paul&Joe Face Powder S (bird balls) as base.