Thursday, October 22, 2009

Barbie Hearts Stila: I'm Not Shallow!

Hahah, the title doesn't make any sense unless you read the actual post =P I'm on my continuous streak of firsts, and as my first Stila purchase, I got the limited edition All Doll'd Up eyeshadow palette from the Barbie collection. The reason why this purchase proves that I'm not shallow is because I decided to get this palette after reading a rave review on Temptalia, and I actually would never have gotten this palette just based on the packaging. In fact, originally I thought I might be scared by the Barbie face on the cover every time I open my makeup drawer, but after seeing the product in person, it's not as bad as I thought it would be so I don't think I'll be forced to redecorate the palette ^^

On to the main show. As I've mentioned, I'm not a big fan of the hologram image on the packaging, but the case feels pretty sturdy and seems to be of good quality. My friends and I agree that the best part of the packaging is the big mirror on the inside of the lid that's great for traveling. Surprisingly, there is no plastic covering for the eyeshadows, which is a first in all the mirrored palettes I've ever seen. There's not much fall out with these eyeshadows though, so the mirror has stayed shadow-free with minimal cleaning. Still, I haven't traveled with the palette yet, so perhaps it will be disaster once I do...

The powder in the Stila eyeshadows I've seen in person are probably the silkiest out of everything that I own or have tried, and this palette is no exception. Some of the high end shadows I've seen like Dior's and Guerlain's can be finely milled, but they're packed down so tight that the shadows are kind of hard to pick up. That is not the case with Stila shadows. These eyeshadows are extremely pigmented and easy to pick up (e.g., I just used my liner brush on a shade this morning, and I dented the shadow when I pressed too hard ^^"'). I would actually consider this palette to have the most pigmented non-liner shades out of everything that I currently own. In addition, the lasting power of the shadows are great with UDPP underneath, so no complaint there either. Still, my favorite part of this palette is the number of colors it contains. Following is a swatch of all the colors with flash.

The palette contains 12 shades laid out like you are buying four trios in one packaging, as you can see above. This layout gives those of us who are bad at pairing colors together an idea for how to wear the different shadows, but still allows the creative or adventurous bunch to mix and match from different trios. For the purposes of swatching, I will be introducing the different shadows by the trio they are grouped in. Before we move on to the individual trios, just a note that all shades in the palette have a metallic or shimmery finish to some extent.

First, the shades in the top left trio of the palette are a sheer beige (A1), a warm medium-dark bronze (A2), and a bright pink (A3). The pink looks quite sheer here, but it can be layered on for a more intense effect. Overall, this is a very spring-like trio.

Next, the top right trio contains a vibrant peacock-y turquoise (B1), a medium-dark gunmetal gray (B2), and an intense purple with blue reflect (B3). This trio is very interesting, and when using all three together, one can create a very colorful and vibrant look that's reminiscent of everything MAC. Once again, the purple shade looks quite sheer here, but it can also be layered on for a more intense effect.

The bottom left trio contains a periwinkle blue (C1), a dark midnight blue (C2), and a medium silvery-gray (C3). This is probably my least favorite trio out of the four because the middle shade is a bit chalky and hard to blend, and also because blues and grays are somewhat of a challenge for my complexion. The periwinkle blue serves as a great middle color between the turquoise and purple from previous trio, though.

Finally, the last trio on the bottom right contains a sheer peach (D1), a cool olivey brown (D2), and a light green (D3) that reminds of ferns or geckos (in a good way). The look of this trio is very nature-themed and also somewhat spring-like.

All in all, there are a variety of looks you can create with just this one palette, from natural and understated to loud and colorful. For me, this palette is definitely something I would use more during the summer.

All pictures in this post were taken under natural light unless otherwise noted.

In short: You are going to love this palette if you like pigmented vibrant colors. The price is amazing for the number of colors, the quality of the shadows is great, and you get a huge mirror, what more can you want? ^.~

Monday, October 19, 2009

More Lavshuca~~ Eye Color Select BR-1

I finally caved. After months of convincing myself that I'm not missing out, that I already have many brown/neutral themed eyeshadow palettes, I still ended up getting the very popular Lavshuca Eye Color Select in BR-1. To be fair, though, I don't own any orange/coppery brown palettes that seem to be popular with Asians so I have to get one if I even want to consider myself an Asian-makeup lover ^_^ (I believe that's a pretty solid excuse...) Plus, it was either this or something from Lunasol, so really, I'm saving a lot of money by getting the Lavshuca...

As with the BU-1, PK-1, and PU-2 that I already own from the same line, the packaging is super cute, the texture is great (except the top right sparkly shade is a bit gritty), and the lasting power is the best I've seen yet (at least out of the things that I use often), so let's move straight on to the colors.

The colors in this palette are an ivory base/highlight (A), a orangey copper (B), a medium warm brown (C), and a sparkly peach (D). I have to admit that even though I'm not big on huge sparkles that tend to migrate, my favorite shade in the palette is the sparkly peach color 'cause it's absolutely beautiful. I seriously would not have bought this palette if it weren't for this shade. The other shades are also gorgeous, but the ivory is nothing really unique or special. This palette is my current favorite because of its amazing ability to brighten up my whole face without much work.

For more details on Eye Color Select line, please see my previous review for the other three colors I own. The official application directions are also there. Also, note that all photos in this post were again taken in natural light.

In short: Love!! A reasonably priced palette compared to Lunasol with smooth texture and great lasting power in beautiful but practical colors.