Friday, December 31, 2010

And the winner is.. (AND a peek @ the upcoming Valentine's Day giveaway)

Today's the day to announce the winner of my Birthday Giveaway. I thought it would be a great start to someone's new year! And the winner is..

Siwing! <3

I used this time around but my non-techy brain didn't know how to copy and paste the little "table" it gives you. I just went to the main page and punched in the numbers. =P I WANTED to write all the names down and mix them all up like I did with my first giveaway but this time around, there were way too many entries for that (maybe I'll do that next time if I have the time.)

Anyways, surprisingly there were a few boo boos in peoples' entries. For instance, some didn't tell me there there favorite "face" product for a super easy extra entry. Some wrote a non-face product like lipstick but instead of not giving the extra entry, I gave it but gave everyone who actually wrote down a "face product" like blush, foundation, face cream, etc. an extra two entries. =P This is just a little reminder though for my next giveaway -don't miss out on easy extra entries!

I also felt a little bad for only having one winner. There were so many entries and having only ONE winner seemed kind of awful. =( Sooooo, I'm making it up to you all by having THREE winners for my upcoming Valentine's Day giveaway which will be up (hopefully) within the next 2 weeks (I sort of want to buy more things online so it'll take time for me to actually receive them.)

Want a sneak peek at the upcoming prizes? Here are photos of what may or may not be included in this upcoming giveaway..

Have a wonderful new years eve everyone! I'm kind of not looking forward to mine.................. =\

Thursday, December 30, 2010

TheBalm Shady Lady Vol. 3 Palette Review & Swatches

Repurchase: Maybe
Price: $39.50 (0.51 oz)
Product: 22/25
Packaging: 4/5
Value: 9.5/10
Overall Grade: B+

I've loved TheBalm's Shady Lady palettes since day one when I first got Vol. 1 about (I believe) two years ago. I loved them for their sleek, travel-friendly compacts, wide variety of shades, and quality eyeshadows. Vol. 1 and 2 were both hits for me so how did Vol. 3 hold up? Read on..

The Packaging: The nine Shady Lady eyeshadows are housed in a sleek, giraffe print palette with a huge mirror that makes the palette great for travelling. Although the palette itself is made of cardboard, it isn’t the stiff, bulky, ugly cardboard you’d expect –it’s very slim. I’m in love with the palette’s “thinness” –it doesn’t take up any space in my makeup bag.

What’s with the giraffe print? Since the first volume, the palettes have always contained an animal skin design. Vol. 1 was coated in chic leopard, Vol. 2 in fierce zebra, and Vol. 3 in my favorite –giraffe! (They’re my favorite animals!)

The Product: The quality of the eyeshadows overall is very good. They eyeshadows are smooth, easy to blend, long lasting, and are fairly pigmented. All the shades are very pigmented with the exception of Runaround Rebecca (which I had to swatch a few times) and Guilty Gwen (a bit chalky.) Also, some don’t seem to have that “excellent” color payoff that I always seek from TheBalm –Come-Hither Heather and Open to Offers Olwen only have “good” color payoff while the rest of the five eyeshadows have excellent color payoff.

I feel that the color payoff of the previous two palettes (Vol. 1 and 2) is better than Vol. 3. Most of the shades from those palettes contain excellent color payoff while with Vol. 3, I hit a few “good” and “average” shades.

I also felt that the color choices that TheBalm decided to include this time around weren’t nearly as beautiful as the palette’s previous counterparts. Also, something I’ve noticed about nearly all the eyeshadows in all three Shady Lady palettes is that it’s always “blank” with shimmer. Where’s the diversity? Where’s the fun? What I love about Urban Decay’s eyeshadows, for example, is that they always switch it up. Sometimes we get pink shimmer and other times we get copper glitter (versus having "plain" shimmer with each shade.)

HOWEVER, what I absolutely love about TheBalm’s Shady Lady palettes is that they always include new colors (I believe there was only one dupe before which was Caught in the Act Courtney from Vol. 1 and 2.) The reason I stopped buying Urban Decay’s Book of Shadows palettes was because they always included shades that I already had from previous palettes and they did this over and over again. Seriously, who needs five copies of the exact same shade? I seriously only kept my Alice in Wonderland Book of Shadows and sold off Vol. 1 and 2 from the series.

The Color:
  1. Lusty Lee- Grayed silver with silver shimmer
  2. Envious Erin- Creamy beige with shimmer
  3. Racy Lacy- Burnt coppery brown with shimmer
  4. Safe Bet Annette- Slightly frosted ballet pink with shimmer
  5. Runaround Rebecca- Light sage with shimmer
  6. Come-Hither Heather- Taupey plum with shimmer
  7. Open to Offers Olwen- Deep peacock turquoise with shimmer
  8. All the Way Annie- Deep eggplant purple with shimmer
  9. Guilty Gwen- Black with silver glitter
Above (no flash) from left: Lusty Lee, Envious Erin, Racy Lacy, Safe Bet Annette, Runaround Rebecca, Come-Hither Heather, Open to Offers Olwen, All the Way Annie, Guilty Gwen
Above (with flash) from left: Lusty Lee, Envious Erin, Racy Lacy, Safe Bet Annette, Runaround Rebecca, Come-Hither Heather, Open to Offers Olwen, All the Way Annie, Guilty Gwen
 Above (no flash) from left: Lusty Lee, Envious Erin, Racy Lacy, Safe Bet Annette, Runaround Rebecca
Above (no flash) from left: Runaround Rebecca, Come-Hither Heather, Open to Offers Olwen, All the Way Annie, Guilty Gwen
Overall: I have to be honest here –I'm not sure if I'm going to keep this palette. I wanted to be an avid collector of all the Shady Lady palettes but I'm not loving all the shades (all together) here –probably because there are only a few neutral shades. I already know I won't be using half of the shades on a regular basis which beats the purpose of why I keep buying these palettes.

Although I like most the shades (individually), I buy these palettes as something that I can use regularly (that's why I like to travel with them) so I'm not sure about this palette. However, if you like all the shades, it's really a great palette to have.

Where To Buy: Sephora

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Presents and After Christmas Sale Haul

I pretty much stopped receiving actual "gifts" (it's always gift cards or cash nowardays) from my family when I was in high school but this year I did get some pretty cool things. I got the Sephora Color Play 5 in 1 II Fashion Edition from my cousins and some Benefit BADgal Mascara from my auntie. I also got an orange Bebe shirt (I love orange!), a wireless mouse (needed this), perfume sample, hair clips, Skittles candy cane, comfy slippers, a "Cat in a Bag" from my little brother, and another handmade blanket from my sister (I got one as an early Christmas present too from my friend.)

My uncle gave us all these Android figurines with money attached.. I thought it was so cute! I didn't want to open it though since it's a collectible and all. =P

Lotso Bear (Click here to buy)- I got my Lotso bear from my boyfriend! He also gave me a sweater (not shown) and my third gift is coming next week. I haven't gotten all his gifts yet either because he's too indecisive about what he wants!!

Ted Baker Flap Front Leather Clutch (similar style here)- I got this gorgeous leather clutch from my boyfriend's mom. I've been looking for one so I was super happy to have gotten this. The problem that I have with clutches is that they're always either too small or have no pockets inside -this is the perfect size, contains a convenient pocket, and has the prettiest floral design. =)

Stuff I bought..

TheBalm Shady Lady Vol. 3 Palette (Click here to buy)- I got TheBalm's new Shady Lady palette. I have both Volumes 1 and 2 so I'm really excited for this one -they're the best "series" of palettes that I own!

Inside the palette.. can't wait to swatch!

The day after Christmas day, I woke up bright and early to go to Target. Surprisingly, it wasn't even that crowded and the sales weren't that great. I got a case for my netbook (only $10!), the Grown Ups movie (for my boyfriend), a cute ballet slippers ornament, Holiday themed marshmallows (around 60 cents?!), and a bunch of stuff from Target's $1 section for half off (only 50 cents!)

Pochacco earrings from Sanrio- I also went to the mall with my little sister which was INSANE. Just trying to get parking to pick up our order at CPK took 45 minutes -and that was to get into the reserved parking space for people ordering take out at CPK!

The Body Shop Wild Cherry Lip Butters- I used to love The Body Shop's Grapeseed Lip Butter but it got discontinued a while back. I stopped buying Lip Butters since then so I thought it was about time I give them a try again! I got two of the Wild Cherry butters since they were on sale for $2 (the other flavors were regular price though.)

I also stopped by Daiso to get some things like jars for Christmas cookies and prizes for the upcoming Valentine's giveaway.

I also stopped by Old Navy. The first ON store I went to didn't have anything but I hit the jackpot with the second store.

Faux-Fur Hooded Anorak (click here to buy)- I got this for around $18 (on sale for around $23 plus a damage discount (10%) and another extra 10% off.) which is a steal compared its original price of $79.50. It's not the most glamorous coat but it's warm and comfy enough to even sleep in.

Chain Pocket Striped Tee (Click here to buy)- I got these for around $5 each (original price $14.50) and I love them! I absolutely adore stripes so these were a must have for me.

Niners Tee (around $5) and Girls 3/4 Sleeve Waffle Tee ($7) (Click here to buy)- I got the Niners tee for going to games (even though I haven't been to one yet!) I also picked up this girls waffle tee because I loved the pattern and the cut. My sister thinks it makes me look like a little girl though.. =P

Long-Sleeve Scoopneck Tees- I got these all at the Gap for under $4 a piece. They were on sale for $7.99 and there was an extra 50% off discount on all sale items for "morning" customers. The discount was reduced to 40% off in the afternoon and I was the last customer to get the 50% off!

Ok that's it for my Christmas haul. Sorry if it was a little long.. I'd love to know what you all got over the Holidays whether they were presents or things you bought. Feel free to share. =)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Nudey Tuesday: Revlon CustomEyes Shadow & Liner Palette in Naturally Glamorous (New!) Review & Swatches

Repurchase: No
Price: $8.99 (0.20 oz)
Product: 21/25
Packaging: 4/5
Value: 8/10
Overall Grade: B

While After Christmas shopping, I stopped by CVS to look for the new ColorBurst lipsticks in Petal and Pink Sugar. I didn't have any luck finding the lippies but I did come across all the new Covergirl products (I didn't buy any) and some new Revlon Displays including the new Revlon CustomEyes palettes. I quickly scooped one up in Naturally Glamorous gor today's Nudey Tuesday.

The Packaging: The compact for Revlon's CustomEyes palettes are similar to Revlon's others but they're sleeker. Combine this with the new quilting design and you have something that looks almost as though it came off the department store shelves!

The new compacts are all black with a clear "window" in the front displaying the colors inside. The cover opens backwards, like a Japanese comic book -this kind of confused me because I'd prefer that it open in the other direction but it's not a big deal. Inside, you also get a double-sided sponge applicator -one side has a normal oval tip while the other side contains a pointed tip.

Product Description & Tips
The Product: Looking at the amazing "knitted" design of the palette, I thought the eyeshadows would be dripping in luxury but of course, one should never judge a book by its cover. The palette contains four eyeshadows (shades 1-4) and one liner (shade 5) that can still used as an eyeshadow. While the shades have good to very good color payoff, some of the shades (3 and 5) are powdery and somewhat chalky. The colors do blend easily though and last throughout the day with a good primer. The shades also don't excel (compared to other drugstore eyeshadows) in terms of pigmentation but are somewhat above average.

I'm honestly not amazed but then again, I'm not disappointed either. I'd say these eyeshadows are better than the ones from my Maybelline Eye Studio quads, have better texture but not as good pigmentation compared to my Wet 'n' Wild Color Icon eyeshadows, and fall below the excellent quality of my Revlon Luxurious Color eyeshadow singles.

The Color:
1. Muted neutral gold with shimmer
2. Dark coppery bronze with shimmer
3. Light beige with shimmer
4. Deep bronze with shimmer
5. Dark smokey gray with shimmer

Above (with flash) from left: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

Overall: I think the palette's decent but it doesn't stand out enough for me to reach for it on a regular basis. The colors are simply too similar to the shades I already own and the formula doesn't keep me interested. This would be a "nice" palette to own if you don't already own many neutral eyeshadows but if you already own a bunch, skip it. Everything about this palette makes me yawn except for the pretty knit design. I don't think I'll be trying any of the other shades because I wasn't amazed by the formula this time around but I may if one of them catches my eye.

P.S. Again, this is just my own personal opinion -if you like the shades, by all means go out an get it! They're just too similar to shades I already own.

Where To Buy: CVS

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas Everyone

Merry Christmas everyone!! I hope you all have a wonderful, safe Christmas. My family actually celebrates Christmas on Christmas eve so we're not doing anything big today. Above is a (bad camera phone) picture of the Christmas tree and presents at my grandparents' house -the kids were so lucky! There must've been nearly a hundred presents total. =P The older kids and adults didn't really get the big presents (we're "too old" for toys and games) but we did get some lovely gift cards and stuff. This is so silly but I was so surprised and happy to get makeup! My family doesn't usually give me beauty products so it really made me laugh. My auntie gave me some Benefit BADgal mascara so now I'm set with BADgal for the next year or so. I'll do a Christmas "haul" soon -let me know what you all got too!! And I can't wait to go After Christmas shopping -I haven't shopped for "just me" in way too long.

Again, I hope you have a marvelous Christmas with your loved ones today. I'm so thankful that my family and friends are all (generally) healthy and happy and I'm so blessed to have them all in my life. Be sure to just have fun today. I feel like everyone is always so stressed around this time of year but remember, it's Christmas! Christmas isn't even about how many presents you can afford to buy or how many you receive (it's really the thought that counts anyways). The most important part of Christmas is being thankful for your friends and family and to love and cherish them. So do me a favor: don't stress out today and just have fun! Merry Christmas everyone. <3

Friday, December 24, 2010

Early Christmas

The other night, my friends came over to exchange presents for Christmas and we of course didn't wait until Christmas to open them! Above are the goodies I got. =) I got a D.Rose shirt, matching VS Pink Panties (like a P.J. Set!!), Toy Story Pencils, Toy Story notebook, Toy Story stickers, Toy Story tote, hair stuff, and a Bulls blanket made with lots of love. I was SOOOO happy with my presents! Thank you! <3

I'm obsessed with wrapping paper and ribbons so I'll show you pictures of those too. =P

Presents from myself to me..

Also, last weekend I picked up 4 plush toys (for myself) from the Disney Store. I've spent SO MUCH money at the Disney store this Christmas on others that I decided I at least needed to get something for me. I got Buttercup, Mr. Pricklepants, Dolly, and the Peas in a Pod and I love them all. I wanted Trixie too but they didn't have her. And the best part is I got these during the BOGO promotion!

I also got another Hello Kitty ring from Sanrio. This is a mood ring (which I've been looking for) in the shape of HK's head. I love it!! It's always changing colors.

Have you gotten anything for Christmas/the Holidays yet? And have you stopped to purchase anything for yourself lately?

Merry Christmas (Eve) everyone!! Thank you so much for supporting The Makeup Drawer and being a part of the blog. I appreciate all of you so much -have a wonderful Holiday. <3333