Friday, July 30, 2010

NEW UPDATE: MAC Venomous Villains Product Details, Pics, & Swatches.. MORE Ugly Packaging

U.S. Launch Date: September 30, 2010
International Launch Date: October 2010
Honestly I'm getting less and less excited for MAC's upcoming Venomous Villains Collection as the time draws nearer. Today, I have more pictures of the not-so-beautiful packaging, the product details, and the collection swatches. It's funny because a few weeks ago I was at MAC and asked the artist about this collection and she said, "I'm not allowed to talk about the collection but the packaging is GORGEOUS!!"
Ok, first off I should've gone to my usual MAC store where the artists are cooler and spill all the details. Secondly, what planet is this lady on?! This packaging is not gorgeous -everything looks like a toy that could be purchased at the Disney Store. I even looked at her and I was like, "Oh did they change the packaging?! Because in the pictures I've seen, the packaging looks so cheap and plastic-y like.. toys." She beamed, "Yea that's the one!"

For swatches, click here.

Cruella De Vil

Lipstick ($15.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
1. Heartless (LE)- Cherry Red (Amplified Creme)
2. Innocence, Beware! (LE)- Light yellow pink (Cremesheen)

Lipglass ($14.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
1. Devilishly Stylish (LE)- Deep fuchsia with pink pearl
2. Wicked Ways (LE)- Light nude with gold pearl

Eyeshadow ($15.50 USD/$18.50 CDN)
1. Carbon (Permanent)- Intense black (Matte)
2. De-Vil (LE)- Rich copper (Veluxe Pearl)
3. Sweet Joy (LE, Repromote from Passions of Red)- Creamy pale gold (Frost)

Penultimate Eyeliner ($16.50 USD/$20.00 CDN)
Rapidblack (Permanent)- True black

Blush ($19.50 USD/$23.50 CDN)
Darkly My Dear (LE)- Mid-tone brown plum (Matte)

Beauty Powder ($25.00 USD/$30.00 CDN)
Her Own Devices (LE)- Cool nude

Evil Queen

Lipstick ($15.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
1. Sinister (LE)- Soft brown plum (Lustre)
2. Toxic Tale (LE)- Bright coral (Satin)

Lipglass ($15.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
1. Hot House Deep (LE, Repromote from Strange Hybrid)- Rasberry with pink pearl
2. Strange Potion (LE)- Soft coral pink

Eyeshadow ($15.50 USD/$18.50 CDN)
1. Her Alter Image (LE)- Light violet (Veluxe Pearl)
2. Vainglorious (LE)- Bronze burgundy (Frost)
3. Vile Violet (LE)- Deep blue purple (Matte)

Penultimate Brow Universal

Blush ($19.50 USD/$23.50 CDN)
Bite of an Apple (LE)- Soft coral pink (Matte)

Beauty Powder ($25.00 USD/$30.00 CDN)
Oh So Fair (LE)- Mid-tone pink with gold pearl


Lipstick ($15.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
1. Dark Deed (LE)- Burgundy plum (Amplified Creme)
2. Violetta (PRO)- Violet purple (Amplified Creme)

Lipglass ($15.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
1. Revenge is Sweet (LE)- Light yellow purple
2. Wrong Spell (LE)- Deep plum with pink purple

Mineralize Eyeshadow ($21.00 USD/$25.00 CDN)
1. My Dark Magic (LE)- Deep pink with pink pearl/ Deep plum with purple pearl
2. She Who Dares (LE)- Deep navy with blue pearl/ Deep forest green with lime pearl

Beauty Powder ($25.00 USD/$30.00 CDN)
Briar Rose (LE)- Soft violet pink with pearl

Nail Lacquer ($12.00 USD/$14.50 CDN)
1. Bad Fairy (LE)- Red with multi-changing pigments
2. Formidable! (LE)- Teal green with pink pigment
3. Mean & Green (LE)- Purple with teal pigment

Dr. Facilier

Lipgelee ($15.00 USD/$18.00 CDN)
Resort Life (LE, Repromote from Sundressing)- Off-white with pink pearl

Greasepaint Stick ($17.50 USD/$21.00 CDN)
1. French Quarter (LE)- Black green with multi-colour pearl
2. Slick Black (LE, Repromote)- True Carbon black

Pigment ($19.50 USD/$23.50 CDN)
1. Brash & Bold (LE, Repromote from Makeup Art Cosmetics)- Bright magenta
2. Melon (Permanent)- Bright golden peach
3. Push the Edge (LE, Repromote from Makeup Art Cosmetics)- Deep bright purple with pearl

Magically Cool Liquid Powder ($29.50 USD/$35.50 CDN)
1. Cajun (LE)- Sheer bronze reflects gold
2. Truth & Light (LE)- Sheer shimmer reflects silver and pink

Mirror ($12.00 USD/$14.50 CDN)
I'm So Vain (LE)- Round special decoration compact mirror

Promo Pics..

My updated list?
1. Innocence, Beware! Lipstick ($15.00)
2. Her Own Devices Beauty Powder ($25.00)
3. Oh So Far Beauty Powder ($25.00)
4. Briar Rose Beauty Powder ($25.00)

I don't know about you but this collection just seems boring now. None of the products really stand out -they should've included some cool palettes and WAY better packaging. As of right now, Fabulous Felines looks way more exciting.


Upcoming Review On My CSN Experience

The other day, Jessica from CSN Stores contacted me about reviewing their products. This is so, so exciting as their are so many choices and products that I can choose to review. They have 200+ stores and I'm not even sure where to start. Because The Makeup Drawer is of course a beauty blog, I'd like to choose something that is more geared towards beauty and style. However, they do have lots of cool things like houseware items and decor to even school supplies.

So, I'm taking suggestions. You can take a look around all the different sites and comment on what you'd be interested in seeing a review on and I'll take it into consideration. Anyways, look out for an upcoming review about my "CSN experience." Have a lovely Friday everyone. =)

NeoStrata + My Current Skincare Routine

I wanted to share with you the skincare routine I've been using for the last month and a half or so.

First off, let me introduce you to "my skin" prior to the start of the new "routine." I have eczema which of course results in my skin being extra dry -dryer than "regular" dry skin. I don't often get acne -maybe a small pimple every 2 weeks or so. Usually once a month, probably because of my "friend's" monthly visit, I'll get 1-2 huge, painful cyst type of pimples filled with nasty pus -I know.. probably a little over share. The only thing I used to use was CeraVe Lotion, Cetaphil Cleanser, and my Essence of Beauty Makeup Remover to remover my makeup.

Earlier in June, I was contacted by the lovely Caitlin from NeoStrata. She sent me 2 projects to try -the Facial Cleanser ($28.00 for 6 oz) and the Daytime Protection Cream SPF 15 ($38.00 for 1.4 oz.) I've added both to my new routine.

Daytime Protection Cream Ingredients
Facial Cleanser Ingredients
 Here's the "new" routine:

1. Every morning, I start off washing my face with just plain ol' water and Cetaphil Cleanser (I ran out of the "facial" kind which seems to feel better on my face but there's no difference in the results.)

2. After that, I either apply CeraVe Lotion or Cetaphil Lotion or both (CeraVe first, Cetaphil on top.)

3. I then apply the NeoStrata Daytime Protection Cream SPF 15. If I'm going to be in the sun for more than an hour, I'll alternate between Clarins UV Plus Day Screen High Protection SPF 40, Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturizer SPF 45 Untinted, and Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF 70.

4. Apply Jack Black Intense Therapy Balm.

5. When the day's over, I use my Essence of Beauty Makeup Remover to wipe away all of my makeup.

6. I then wash my face again with the NeoStrata Facial Cleanser.

7. Then, I moisturize my face with CeraVe Lotion or Cetaphil Lotion or both and apply Jack Black Intense Therapy Balm again.

So has my skin improved??

YES!! After following this routine for a month and a half, I haven't gotten any cysts or pimples with pus in them. I also haven't gotten as many tiny pimples -only 1 so far and it's more like a bump on my forehead that just hasn't gone away (I've just had that same "pimple" since forever and it never seems to fully go away.) Other than that, everything's been pretty great!

So, have the NeoStrata products been effective?

1. NeoStrata Daytime Protection Cream SPF 15- I love this stuff. I'm used to most sunscreen products being thick, heavy, greasy, and smelly and this is the total opposite. It's light and feels like my regular lotion -I don't even feel like I'm wearing sunscreen. Products that contain SPF usually dry out my skin and I'm to report that this actually feels moisturizing. I also love that there is no smelly sunscreen scent or any scent at all for that matter -I hate scented skincare products. Oh and another plus? This doesn't make my face look white in pictures! Most products containing SPF will do that to you. The only downside is that it only contains SPF 15 -I'd like it be higher.

2. NeoStrata Facial Cleanser- I've been using this religiously every night so I have this to thank for my nearly pimple-less last month and a half. After cleaning my face with this, my skin is very soft, smooth, and supple. I've also noticed that my skin is a little brighter and not as red as before. I love that this cleanser is so gentle and cleans my sensitive skin without irritating it (no scent either.) I find absolutely no flaw in the cleanser and am in love with it.

Result Photo!

Nearly clear skin! This is me with no foundation or tinted moisturizer -just my lotion and the NeoStrata Cream on top. I have that pesky pimple on my forehead though. The reason my forehead looks so dry is because the night before (taking this pic), I applied some acne medicine on top. The medicine really dries out my skin.

Overall, I'm very happy with my experience of the 2 NeoStrata products I tried. The Daytime Protection Cream SPF 15 is a wonderful product -but I'm not sure if I'd shell out $38.00 for such a small tube that only contains 1.4 oz. I'm also looking for something with a higher SPF. The Facial Cleanser on the other hand is an absolute gem. While my Cetaphil Cleanser works OK for cleaning my face, this really gets rid of the dirt so that I get practically no acne, my skin is brighter and not as red, and my face is as soft and smooth as a baby's bottom. This will definitely be a repurchase.

Disclaimer: The 2 NeoStrata products were sent to me for consideration by the company. The review is based fully on my own opinion and thoughts of the products. I do not get paid to do reviews -my focus is bringing all readers honest, helpful reviews. Please feel free to email me if you have any questions or concerns. =)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Holy Moly It Worked!! MAC Will Be Donating ALL Proceeds from MAC for Rodarte..

All the kicking, screaming, and being upset with MAC, passing the petition around, and angry phone calls and emails has finally paid off. MAC will no longer be donating $100,000.00 -they will be donating 100% of the proceeds from the MAC for Rodarte Collection to the Women and Girls of Juarez Initiative and I am so, so happy.
I am so amazed that "our" outrage actually caused MAC to change their minds. Because of all our voices, MAC decided to donate $100,000.00 -which they were not going to originally do. However, we continued voicing our concerns and now they're donating everything and I'm just again, truly amazed. We made a difference by joining together and we can continue to do so with anything. Sure I'm a little upset that MAC didn't even plan on donating a dime to the situation in Juarez but it is truly generous that they turned it around and are now donating all the proceeds.
Prior to the announcement that they'd be donating the $100,000, I wrote that I was weary of buying anything from the collection because it seemed so wrong. After the announcement, I still didn't want to because I wanted them to donate all of the proceeds. Now that MAC will be donating 100%, I feel that we should buy something, or a few things, from the collection. I along with most college students can't buy everything of course as we don't have the funds for it but I'm going to do my best. Just a reminder (for anyone who cannot buy anything from this collection at this time).. we can always help later too -through donations.
Again, I'd just like to thank MAC for turning around and becoming aware of the situation and for being so generous. I'd also like to thank God and the Virgin Mary. I've been praying to them since this whole thing exploded -asking that a change be made and that change has been made and I'm so thankful. I hear so often people saying that prayer doesn't work but it only doesn't work when you don't believe in your own prayers. It also takes time -nothing happens over night. Please, if you do pray (I'm not trying to offend people who don't), continue sending out your prayers to the people living in Juarez. I am so happy that they'll be receiving some much needed help.

Read On..
MEXICO CITY, México, July 29, 2010 – In response to public concern over the limited edition MAC Rodarte makeup collection, set to launch in fall 2010, MAC will donate all of its global profits from this collection to a newly created initiative to raise awareness and provide on-the-ground support to the women and girls in Juarez. MAC and Rodarte are deeply sorry that this makeup collection was so offensive to the people of Mexico and concerned global citizens.
This announcement follows a meeting last evening in Mexico City with MAC executives and Mexican government officials, including CONAVIM (Comisión Nacional Para Prevenir y Erradicar la Violencia Contra las Mujeres/National Commission to Prevent and Eradicate Violence Against Women.)
During the meeting, held at the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this collective group committed to working together on the overall direction of the new initiative to help the women and girls of Juarez and to raise global awareness of their plight. MAC executives reiterated their deep regret and reinforced that it was never MAC’s or Rodarte’s intent to minimize the suffering of the women and girls of Ciudad Juarez.

In the coming weeks, MAC and Rodarte will be consulting with members of CONAVIM´s advisory board, as well as other local and global experts, to develop a comprehensive framework that provides grants to local and international organizations with a track record of improving the lives of the women and girls in Juarez.

“We are deeply sorry and apologize to everyone we offended, especially the victims, the women and girls of Juarez and their families. We have heard the response of concerned global citizens loud and clear and are doing our very best to right our wrong. The essence of MAC is to give back and care for the community and our initial handling of this makeup collection was not reflective of MAC’s values. MAC and Rodarte are committed to using these learnings to raise awareness on this important issue and to leverage our unique platform to help the women and girls of Juarez,” said MAC President John Demsey.

“Rodarte is committed to using creativity for positive social change. As designers, we strongly feel it is our responsibility to use ideas and actions for the good of our global community and are truly sorry for the offense we have caused. We are raising our voices in support of the strong women and girls of Juarez and joining others who are working internationally to improve their lives,” said Kate and Laura Mulleavy, designers of Rodarte.

Last week, MAC and Rodarte announced they would also be renaming the products and redesigning the marketing materials associated with the collection.

MAC has a longstanding tradition of service in Mexico, supporting important social causes in the country such as HIV prevention and treatment. Since 2002, the MAC AIDS Fund has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to local entities, including Fundación Eudes, La Casa de la Sal, A.C., Ser Humano, A.C., Mesón de la Misericordia Divina A.C., Pirana Studio, and Fundación Unidos por un México Vivo.
MAC has had operations in Mexico since 1999. The brand currently employs more than 150 local professionals.


My Beloved Jack Black Lip Balm & How To De-Tube!

Repurchase: Yes
Price: $7.00 (7 g/ 0.25 oz)
Product: 9/10
Packaging: 9/10
Value: 8/10
Overall Grade: A-
Today I wanted to share one of my absolute favorite beauty products. If I could only have 5 skincare/makeup products to hold me up for the rest of my life, the Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm with SPF 25 would need to be on the list. Just because it's a "men's product" doesn't mean it can't work wonders for us ladies.
The Packaging: The lip balm comes in a squeeze tube with a simple, clean design. I actually like the feel of the look even though it's not super girly or anything -it's definitely a unisex design.
Like with any squeeze tube, when nearly all the product is used up, it gets very difficult to squeeze the leftover bits of lip balm out. I've made a little tutorial (below after the review) for you.
The Product: Although this might seem pricey at $7 a pop (0.25 oz), I think the price is justifiable. My tube of Blistex contains 0.13 oz at around $3 so this is just a little pricier than the other balms out there. For another reference, my tin of Burt's Bees contains a whopping 0.30 oz for $2.99. Also, you do not need a lot of product to get the job done -just a small "dab." I go through less than 5 tubes per calendar year ($35.00 for 365 days.) Take note that I do use this about 3-4 times a day.
I've been absolutely in love with this lip balm since I first tried it about 2 years ago. It's the only lip balm that works on me (in the long run.) Other balms will work for the first few days/weeks but will end up having a reverse effect on my lips -causing them to become flaky and dry. This stuff gets me by although I do use it nearly every day. I haven't yet been able to find a product that permanently cures my dry lips but this has made my lips soft on a day to day basis.
Another thing I like about it is that it lasts very long. I'll apply a slightly thick layer onto my lips before bed and when I wake up, it's still there. Also, the balm is absolutely colorless so you don't have to worry about it altering your lipstick/lip gloss color. The best part is that the balm contains SPF 25 -it's important to wear products containing SPF on your skin and lips.

The Flavors: So far, I've tried the Natural Mint & Shea Butter, Lemon & Chamomile, and Vanilla & Lavender and the results are consistent with every flavor. The “taste” in each flavor is very light but you can tell the differences between the individual flavors. The scent is a lot stronger than the taste –there’s not a ton of taste to these which I like.
1. Natural Mint & Shea Butter- This is light and minty but not over the top for mint haters. It has that slight "numbing" sensation that you'd get from a lip plumper but it's not nearly as bad -it's just a very light "tingle" that fades after about 5 minutes.
2. Lemon & Chamomile- This is my favorite. It smells and tastes like lemon candy. The scent is to die for!!
3. Vanilla & Lavender- This isn't my favorite but it's not bad. It smells like the name suggests but has a heavier dose of lavender than vanilla.
Overall: I see myself repurchasing this forever -I don't know if I'll ever stop. It works for me even though it may be slightly pricier than other lip balms. I also need that SPF for my lips and no other lip product with SPF has been nearly as effective.

Where To Buy: Sephora, Jack Black, Nordstrom

Onto the Tutorial.. How To De-Tube Your Jack Black Tube
I recommend cutting open the tube when you feel like there’s nothing left –just like you would a tube of UDPP. I regret not doing this for my last gazillion Jack Black tubes I’ve gone through but just started doing this. Just when I could no longer squeeze a single drop of product out, inside was a full 2+ week’s worth of product. Here’s how I did it:
I didn't take a picture of all the materials but you'll need:
1. An empty jar
2. "Empty" Jack Black Lip Balm tube
3. Rubbing alcohol
4. Cotton balls
5. Toothpick
6. Scissors
Step 1: Clean your materials (jar, scissors)with the cotton ball & alcohol.
Step 2: Snip off the very bottom of the tube (arrow above shows which part to cut.)
Step 3: Use your clean toothpick to scoop out the lip balm.
Step 4: Use the rim of the jar to scrape the lip balm off the toothpick.
Step 5: Snip off the middle of the tube. Repeat Step 3 & Step 4.
Step 6: Snip off the upper part of the tube. Repeat Step 3 & Step 4.
Step 7: You should now have a bunch of lip balm clinging to the entire rim of the jar. Use another clean toothpick to scrape all of the balm off the rim and scoop it towards the center of the jar.
Now you have about 2 weeks worth of lip balm!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Olive Oil as Makeup Remover?

I've heard of people using Extra Virgin Olive Oil as makeup remover for years but I finally tried it myself. It's supposed to remove makeup very well, be very gentle, and not dry out the skin while actually not making it super oily.
I used the olive oil as I would my normal makeup remover. I poured some of the oil onto a cotton pad and used it on my eyes, face, and lips. For everywhere but the eyes, it was fine. For the eyes, it removed everything -even waterproof makeup, but stung my eyes like no other makeup remover ever has. It was so painful that I ended up sticking my face (and eye) under cold running water for about 3 minutes straight.
Maybe it was because I only had the Costco Kirkland brand but I'm never trying this again. However, if you do try it, you should wash your face afterwards since it'll obviously be a bit oily and "greasy." Also, don't say I didn't warn you about the case of crazy burning eyes you may contract.

Extra Fruit Sensations Sweet Watermelon

Repurchase: Yes
Price: Around $1.00 (2 for $2 deal at 7 Eleven)
Product: 8.5/10
Packaging: 8.5/10
Value: 9/10
Overall Grade: B
Last week, I went to CVS and 7 Eleven looking for the Extra Fruit Sensations Strawberry Banana (after Val had reminded of my love for it) but they didn't have it! I ended up with the Fruit Sensations Sweet Watermelon instead.
The Packaging: The packaging is simple -the flap in the back lifts up to reveal the sticks of gum. I like the bright green and slices of watermelon on the front side. It's not super exciting but it's good enough.
 Nutrition facts
The Product: This is your tradition, long, thin stick of gum -not the small, thick kind. Sweet Watermelon has the typical artificial watermelon taste that's just a little too sweet to be like "real watermelon." This is a decent chew -I really like Extra's Fruit Sensations line of chewing gums. As for lasting ability, I spit this out after over half an hour. There was still a tiny bit of taste left -but not enough to make me want to keep chewing it. This also freshens the breath a little but remember, it's not a minty gum.
Overall: I'd buy this again but I personally prefer the other Extra Fruit Sensations flavors. I wouldn't go out and hoard 100 packs of this stuff but I'd definitely buy it again if I had a hankering for some watermelon flavored gum.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Nudey Tuesday: NYX Ultimate Pearl Eye Shadow in Sahara Pearl

Repurchase: Yes
Price: $7.00 (0.11 oz/ 3 g)
Product: 8.5/10
Packaging: 8/10
Value: 10/10
Overall Grade: B+
For today's Nudey Tuesday, I'll be review the NYX Ultimate Pearl Eye Shadow Single in "Sahara." I prefer NYX's Ultimate Pearl shadows over their other square-shaped singles. Btw, this is the older formula as NYX has recently come out with a newer, more shimmery formula.
NYX cosmetics are a great option for those who want quality at a lower price. I'd consider NYX products to be higher quality than your average drugstore products but not as good as the top high-end lines. They're priced slightly higher than drugstore brands like Maybelline or L'Oreal but the prices are still significantly lower than higher end brands.
The Packaging: The eyeshadow is packaged in a plastic, black, circular container. The lid is clear so that you can see the shade inside. I also really like the "diamond quilting" that's imprinted on the eyeshadow.
Although I like the overall packaging, it feels a bit flimsy like the lid could fall off. Other than that, the packaging is simple and compact.
The Product: The eyeshadow is very pigmented for a "drugstore product" but doesn't give as much color payoff as the best NARS or MAC eyeshadows. The formula is also smooth and buttery, soft but not too soft, and blends easily. The only reasons I wouldn't give this a solid A grade are because the pigmentation could be better and also because the eyeshadow does not last as long as my other shadows.
The value of these eyeshadows are excellent -MAC singles ($11.00-$14.50) contain 0.05 oz compared to the 0.11 oz this ($7.00) contains.
The Color: Sahara is a light-medium champagne nude with slight rose gold tints and pearl shimmer. (The 1st swatch pic more resembles the actual color while the 2nd pic shows more of the rose gold.)
 Above (no flash): NYX Ultimate Pearl Eye Shadow in Sahara Pearl
Above (no flash): NYX Ultimate Pearl Eye Shadow in Sahara Pearl

Overall: I'd definitely recommend this. The formula is great, the price is super low, and the shade should work on anyone regardless of your skin tone as it's so versatile.

Where To Buy: NYX Cosmetics, Cherry Culture