Monday, February 28, 2011

February 2011 Favorites

  1. Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm in Black Tea & Blackberry and Natural Mint & Shea Butter- I've been using the Vanilla & Lavender and Lemon & Chamomile flavors for the last few months so this was a nice change. The Black Tea & Blackberry is from a set of 3 and I absolutely love the flavor of this. It's sweet without being overly sweet. The Natural Mint is always nice -it "wakes up" my lips with its slight, tingly and minty sensation. (Review here) (Buy here)
  2. Stila Make Me Blush- This bright, golden, pinky coral has really perked up my sleepy face (too much school!!) over the last month. It's easy to use when I'm in a hurry and on the go. (Review here) (Buy here)
  3. Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Rude- I've also been loving this Illamasqua blush for a quick, no-fuss look. I can wear it without a full face of makeup and look "naturally flushed" -which I love. (Review here) (Buy here)
  4. LORAC Multiplex 3D Lip Gloss in 4D- I got 4D, a new shade, in a set that also came with 3D. I innitially expected 4D to be more pigmented but I like the semi-sheer bubblegum pink shade and pretty shimmer. It's not too over the top and works with daily, natural looks. (3D review here) (Swatches of all permanent shades here) (Buy here)
  5. Smashbox Step-By-Step Contour Kit- Although this was sent from Apothica, it was something that I've had my eye on since Smashbox came out with it (I believe a few months ago?) I'm so happy to have received it. I've only just started testing it out but so far, it does a great job sculpting my face -my boyfriend even noticed! (Buy here)
  6. Eminence Eight Greens Whip Moisturizer- It's funny because I received this as a sample with my Apothica order and it turned out to be one of my favorite products. I've used this a few times (at night) and in the morning, I've woken up with smooth, glowing skin. It's even helped to even out my skin a bit. I don't know what's in this stuff but I've received compliments after every use. The only thing that's stopping me from immediately placing an order is the hefty price tag -I need more time to test it out before I make such a big investment on a beauty product. (Buy here)
  7. Reshaping my eyebrows- Two weeks ago, I reshaped and groomed my brows. This may sound weird but I guess depending on the season, I like to change up the shape of my brows. In the Fall and Winter, I love a thicker brow but in the Spring and Summer, it's all about lighter hair and thinner brows! (I'll post a photo soon.)
  8. Stash Chai Green Tea with milk and sugar- I used to drink this by itself but a few nights ago, I tried it with milk and sugar and it was AMAZING. I usually order a Chai Green Tea Latte at my favorite coffee shop and then mix of the tea, sugar, and milk takes exactly like that. It's so good that I ran out and couldn't take a photo of it! (Review here) (Buy here)
I apologize for the rather lazy post as I usually add individual photos of all the products. I didn't get much sleep last night and I've had a pounding headache from yesterday so I really didn't have the energy to take new photos and sort throught all of them. Have a lovely Monday every one and I hope you all get plenty of sleep and rest.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Gloss Quick Review & Swatches

I've had the new Revlon ColorBurst Lip Glosses for months now but haven't gotten around to reviewing them. Honestly, I'm just not really excited about them (which is the reason I haven't reviewed them!)

My quick take on them: Revlon's Color Burst Lip Glosses are decent but to me, they're only average and honestly, I don't pay attention to average when I have so many other glosses to choose from. To sum it up, they are sheer, moisturizing glosses that last for about 2-3 hours. They are very moisturizing -more than the Super Lustrous glosses. The majority of these glosses are NOT pigmented and if you're looking for something sheer and shimmery, these will be perfect for you but if not, keep on walking.

I'd recommend picking up 1 or 2 but don't go rushing to buy every shade -they're really no different from the other sheer glosses on the market and they're a bit expensive at full price.

The packaging is cute -clear tubes with black, quilted lids (similar to the ColorBurst Lipstick tubes.) The applicator is thinner and straighter than the usual doe foot with an oval edge.

I'm sorry I don't remember the price but I got them on sale at CVS for $6.49 -they should be around $8-9 retail price. (I'll update when I find out for sure.) Contains 0.20 oz.

  • Crystal Lilac (002)- Light almost grapefruit pink with pink and blue violet shimmer. On the lips, this gives a light wash of lilac (because of the shimmer) pink. I like the color of the shimmer in this.
  • Strawberry (006)- Bright strawberry red with silver shimmer. On the lips, this gives a nice tint of bright, strawberry red.
  • Hot Pink (010)- Bright fuchsia with silver shimmer. Finally! A shade that’s pigmented. This is a nice shade of deep fuchsia on the lips –it’s really not like flashy and bright.
  • Orchid (012)- Medium orchid pink with shimmer. This is one of the more pigmented shades although it still goes on semi-sheer and gives a tint of medium orchid-lilac to my lips.
  • Sunset Peach (022)- Golden peach with gold shimmer. This goes on very sheer on the lips and looks more like a MLBB shade with a hint of golden shimmer.


Above (with flash) from left: Crystal Lilac, Strawberry, Hot Pink, Orchid, Sunset Peach
Above (no flash) from left: Crystal Lilac, Strawberry, Hot Pink, Orchid, Sunset Peach

Lip Swatches..
Above (with flash): Crystal Lilac
 Above (with flash): Strawberry
Above (with flash): Hot Pink
Above (with flash): Orchid
Above (with flash): Sunset Peach

Have a marvelous Friday everyone! <33

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Rude Review & Swatches

Repurchase: Yes
Price: $24.00 (0.14 oz)
Product: 23.5/25
Packaging: 4.5/5
Value: 7/10
Overall Grade: B+

Illamasqua is ready for Spring with their Colour Collision collection consisting of the Warm Story, Cool Story, and Dangerously Red Story. The Cream Blusher in Rude comes straight out of the Warm Story which contains peaches, pinks, and bright oranges -perfect for the warm toned gal.

The Packaging: The cream blusher comes in a sturdy, black plastic compact. The lid features a "window" displaying the shade inside which I really like -although a mirror would be great too.

I love the fun design and shape of Illamasqua's blush compacts -they're squares with sides that are rounded inwards.

Product Description & Directions
The Product: The cream blush applies so smoothly and blends into my skin easily giving me a natural looking, flushed cheek. The blush is extremely pigmented so I just had to dip my brush in 2-3 times to get just enough color for both cheeks.

At first, I was scared that the blush would go on patchy or sit "on top" of my skin (which has happened with other cream blushes) but this applied beautifully. It's really a no fuss cream blusher. And to make the job even easier, I used my $15 Sonia Kashuk Synthetic Flat Top Brush. All I did was dab the brush into the blush and blend the color (in circular motions) onto the apples of my cheeks.

As for the wear time, at 2 hours, the (color) intensity had died down leaving a more natural, glowing tint of color. At the 5 hour mark, the blush had faded almost completely. I haven't tried too many cream blushes but of the ones I have tried, this makes it to the top of my list (in terms of wear time.) My other cream blushes always faded within 2 hours or so leaving no color behind.

To ensure longer lasting color, use primer underneath and a powder blush on top.

The Color: Rude is a soft, but bright, peach with a touch of coral.
Above (no flash): Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Rude

Overall: While the product quality is "A" grade level, the blush is a wee bit expensive compared to the other cream blushes on the high-end market. After giving Rude a try, I'm definitely going to explore the other cream blushers in the line. They're great when worn alone but I feel like they'd be brilliant when combined with my favorite powder blushes.

Where To Buy: Illamasqua

Disclosure: This post contains products sent by PR

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Just the Weekly Drugstore Haul: New Revlon Color Burst Lipsticks, Wet 'n' Wild 8-Pan Palettes, Goody Hair Ties

I stopped by Walgreens yesterday for the 100th time to see if they finally all of the new Wet 'n' Wild 8-pan palettes. I've been checking all of my local Walgreens on a regular basis (2 or 3 times a week!) for almost 2 months now and they've had trouble receiving Wet 'n' Wild shipments -even when they place special orders for the products. I finally found Petal Pusher palette last week and then found the other two yesterday. I quickly scooped up the last Blue Had Me At Hello palettes and two Comfort Zone palettes (one to give away.) I used a rain check too (from the 50% off Wet 'n' Wild sale) so I scored all the palettes for $2.50.

Along with that amazing deal, I also scored two sets of 27 Goody hair ties for $2.99 each. They're on sale right now and on top of that, you get $2 back in Register Rewards -I was able to get $4 RR because she let me get $2 for each since they were different colors and not the same exact set. I also grabbed another set of 17 for $1.59 which I think is stupid now since I only paid 99 cents for a set of 27!! Agh.. That's what happens when you don't think things through when you're shopping.

I also picked up a Jordan Fabuliner for $2.99 -hope it's good! Oh yea, at Walgreens, the cashier also gave me perfume samples -did anyone know that they do this now?!

Then, later before meeting my friends for dinner, I stopped by CVS and found all of the new Revlon Color Burst lipsticks. I scooped up Rosy Nude (don't know if that's new), Pink Sugar, Icy Nude, Cherry Ice, and Petal (x2). I used a rain check so they were each $6.49 with $4 Extra Bucks for each -so basically $2.49 each!

Ok, no more buying makeup for the rest of the week. I really need to ban myself from buying makeup since I have SO MUCH to review already but it's so, so hard. =(

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Nudey Tuesday: NARS Laguna Bronzing Powder

Repurchase: Yes
Price: $33.00 (0.28 oz)
Product: 23/25
Packaging: 4/5
Value: 7/10
Overall Grade: B

I know I'm late to jump on the NARS Laguna Bronzer train but this past weekend, I finally gave the popular favorite a shot. My experience? Pretty darn good!

The Packaging: The bronzer is packaged in the traditional NARS matte black compact with the brand name displayed across the cover. The lid opens to reveal the powder and a large mirror.

The only downside as with most NARS products is that the compact tends to collect lots of dirt and dust.


The Product: Although Laguna is a "bronzing powder," it can be used for bronzing or contouring. I love NARS for their quality and the Laguna bronzer is no exception. The powder applies smoothly, blends effortlessly, and has excellent color payoff. The powder does not irritate my skin and for me, easily lasts over 6 hours on bare skin. Now combine that with a good primer and I'm good to go all day (agh that sounds kind of wrong!! I need to get my mind out of the gutter.)

Because of the color, I like Laguna more as a contouring shade than as a bronzer. For bronzers, I prefer brighter, more glowy shades and this does not "glow" too much on my skin.

The Color: Laguna is a slightly warmed, bronzed neutral brown with subtle golden shimmer. The shimmer isn't noticeable once applied -I'd say it gives off more of a slight sheen than shimmer.

Something I have to mention that's awesome about Laguna is that it's not orange-y like many bronzers out on the market. I feel like it could work for ladies of warm and cool skin tones.


Above (no flash): NARS Bronzing Powder in Laguna

Overall: I like it. I think it's a little overpriced for what it is and does but the wear time and the fact that it doesn't my skin itch or burn win be over. I've tried several drugstore bronzers that look almost the same (except they don't go on as smoothly or blend as nicely) but they never "felt" this good on my skin. I personally prefer Laguna for contouring but it can definitely be used as a bronzer too.

While the product itself is very nice, I do not like that the compact gets dirty quickly -I don't like dusty looking compacts. Also, it's quite expensive -shelling out out 33 bucks for a bronzer is not my cup of tea.

Where To Buy: Sephora, NARS

Monday, February 21, 2011

Gap & Old Navy Haul (Clothes, Accessories, & Flats!)

Everyone that knows me knows that I'm practically a walking billboard for the Gap company (consists of Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime, Athleta.) I'm by no means a brand whore -I just like simple clothing options and accessories without all the extra bells and whistles. Gap, Old Navy, and Banana Republic gives me that with just the right amount of "spunk" I need.

During the weekend, I went to Old Navy and Gap and scooped up a few goodies for some really great prices. Here's what I got:

Old Navy Ballet Flats- $11.70 (orig. price $19.50) I saw these a few weeks ago and am so glad I waited. It's difficult to see in the photos but they're a metallic, dusty rose shade -perfect for spring!
Old Navy Chain-Applique Faux-Leather Flats- $13.50 (orig. price $22.50) I really liked these at first because of the nude color but the more I tried them on (at home) the more I realized how big they made my feet look. The toe area is just really weird and make my feet look gigantic.. and I'm a size 5.5/6! Definitely a return.

Gap Mini-Crossbody Bag- $13.43 (orig. price $39.50) I LOVE this bag! I first purchased it in the pewter shade but after a night of much debate, I decided to return it because I didn't love the color. When I came back the next day, I found two left in the stone/tan color and instantly fell in love. It even looks like real leather and the material feels very buttery and soft.

Gap Metallic Tote- $16.23 (orig. price $49.50) I love Gap's tote bags (I have a black "patent leather" from a few years back a lot like the one above) so I had to add this to my collection. It comes in a variety of shades including metallic bronze, rose gold, silver, and plum. I thought the plum was kind of cool (and VERY pretty) but I felt like bronze was more practical since it would go well with most of my clothes.

Gap Woven-Back Cardigan- $21.27 (orig. price $59.50) I'm a sweater/cardigan whore and wear one on a daily basis. I bought this in the canvas color and it's such a fun, girly addition to my wardrobe. It's different and I haven't really seen anything like it. I love the ruffle detailing in the back and it's a really great fit -something especially difficult to find when you're petite.

Gap Sequin Sleeve T- $11.19 (orig. price $34.50) This is the only shirt I bought in a different size. I'm usually an X-Small (the petite sizes fit me better but I prefer my shirts longer so I buy the "regular sizes" in their sweaters and tops) but I went ahead and got a Small because the XS would not cover my butt. I love the length of the Small but the chest area sometimes droops down -exposing my bra (not the look I'm going for..) Overall though, I do like the material and length. The "sequin" sleeves are OK but I find them a bit odd. Oh yea, my boyfriend HATES this shirt.

BTW, the sleeves don't contain the traditional, sparkly sequins. They're more like little circles with a dull, semi-shiny finish.

And lastly, yesterday, when my boyfriend first came by, he surprised me with some of my favorite things -giraffe and Hello Kitty items! He got me a stuffed Giraffe, a Hello Kitty key chain, and some Hello Kitty mints. I can't stop eating the mints -they're delicious.

Have a nice night/morning/afternoon everyone!

Above images of models from Gap.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Apothica & Illamasqua Haul

A few weeks ago, a marketing company that represents SkinCareRx and Apothica emailed me about sponsoring The Makeup Drawer. After reading the details, I accepted and since then, I've been so excited and eager to order some products to review. After browsing the site numerous times, I finally decided on what I wanted.

Last Wednesday, I placed my order and when I got home yesterday (just 3 days later), the Apothica package was waiting for me. Talk about quick shipping! They processed and shipped my order (the next day) so quickly so -I must say that I am extremely satisfied with their customer service.

Well enough of my random babble. Here's what I got:
Also, I found this coupon code on RetailMeNot if you'd like to order from them: SKFRIEND20 (for 20% off your first order.) SKIN10 gets you 10% off any order.

Overall, the prices seem fair. I of course didn't have time to go through every product, but most products are either the same, slightly lower, or slightly higher than prices from competing stores like Sephora and Ulta. With the coupon code, you do get some great savings. Also, U.S. orders over $49 ship free.

Oh yea, and 2 days before that, I got my Illamasqua products!

  • Illamasqua Intense Lipgloss in Mistress
  • Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Rude
I can't wait to try everything out and write some reviews! Have a lovely Sunday everyone. <33

Disclosure: This post contains products sent by PR.

Friday, February 18, 2011

My To Do List: So Much Makeup, So Little Time..

I'm going to let you in on a little secret: I have more makeup than I can handle. Blogging isn't a piece of cake -or at least I don't think it is. I need time to take good photos, swatch products, do test-runs, take notes, write the reviews, and edit everything.

As you've all noticed by now, my reviews tend to be very thorough and in depth which means they take 5x longer than I'd like to write. Anyways, I'm writing this post as somewhat of a "to do" list to get me motivated to complete the reviews for all or at least most of the products that I'm about to list. Feel free to request reviews of certain products listed so that I can get started on those sooner.

The following list contains products that I have yet to review. I haven't even opened most of these products!

The List: (in no particular order)
  1. Badger Healing Balm
  2. Badger SPF 30 for Face & Body
  3. Benefit Bella Bamba Blush
  4. Benefit Coralista Blush
  5. Benefit Set: Posietint, High Beam, Benetint
  6. Cetaphil Skin Restoring Body Wash & Moisturizer
  7. Illamasqua Intense Gloss in Mistress
  8. Illamasqua Intense Gloss in Indulge
  9. Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Rude
  10. Illamasqua Powder Blusher in Lover
  11. Inglot Lip Paint
  12. Inglot (Custom) Lipstick Palette
  13. Jack Black Intense Therapy Balm Set
  14. JK Jemma Kidd Lipstick in Minx
  15. Korres Lip Glaze Set
  16. LORAC 3D Multiplx Set (with 3D & 4D)
  17. MAC Wonder Woman Blush Duos
  18. MAC Mickey Contractor Fluidline in Siahi
  19. MAC Kissable Lipcolours in Woo Me & Enchantee
  20. Make Up For Ever Waterproof Eyebrow Corrector
  21. Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick in Born With It
  22. Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick in Pink Please
  23. Milani NEW Baked Blushes
  24. NARS Blush in Angelika
  25. NARS Bronzer in Laguna
  26. Neutrogena Sheer Highlighting Blush in Vibrant
  27. OCC Lip Tars
  28. Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Blush (contains mica eeeek!)
  29. Revlon Eyeshadows in Shimmering Sienna & Peach Sorbet
  30. Revlon NEW Color Burst Lip Glosses
  31. Revlon NEW Color Burst Lipstick in Candy Pink
  32. Sally Hansen Carmindy Powder Blushes
  33. Sally Hansen Carmindy Sheerest Cream Blushes
  34. Sally Hansen Carmindy Eyeshadow Trios
  35. Sally Hansen Carmindy Your Skin Makeup Foundation
  36. Sally Hansen Diamond 12 HR Lip Treatment in Engaging
  37. Smashbox Photo Finish Lipstick in Pout
  38. Smashbox Blush in Paradise
  39. Smashbox Blush in Heartbreak
  40. Smashbox Blush in Gingersnap
  41. Smashbox Step-By-Step Contour Kit
  42. Smashbox Soft Lights in Shimmer
  43. Smashbox Fusion Soft Lights in Dusk
  44. Tarte Smooth Operator Primer
  45. The Body Shop Lip Balm in Cranberry Joy
  46. The Body Shop Lip Butter in Wild Cherry
  47. Too Faced Pixie Pin-Ups Set
  48. Too Faced Mirror Mirror Gloss in I Love Myself
  49. Wet 'n' Wild NEW Eyeshadow Trio in I Dream of Geenie
  50. Wet 'n' Wild NEW Eyeshadow Trio in I Got Good Jeans
  51. Wet 'n' Wild NEW Eyeshadow Trio in I'm Feeling Retro
  52. Wet 'n' Wild NEW Eyeshadow Trio in Spoiled Brat
  53. Wet 'n' Wild NEW 8-Pan Palette in Petal Pusher
  54. Wet 'n' Wild Holiday Palette in Snow Sprite
  55. Wet 'n' Wild Arch Envy
  56. Wet 'n' Wild Mega Liners
  57. Wet 'n' Wild Color Icon Blush in Heather Silk
  58. Wet 'n' Wild Natural Wear Lip Shimmer in Sugar
  59. Wet 'n' Wild Wild Shine Lip Lacquer in Passionate
  60. Wet 'n' Wild Color Icon Pencil in Green
Agh! Long list. I want to be able to complete reviews for all of these products before I buy anything new but I doubt that's happening. I hate (and love) that new products come out so frequently..

CSN Haul

Last Summer (OMG talk about lagging), I was contacted be CSN and they me and sent me a gift certificate to use at any of their 200+ stores. Well, being the horrible blogger I am, I totally forgot about it. Finally, the day before it expired (at the end of the year), I placed my order. At first, I wanted to get this Bulls backpack but it was impractical since the last time I wore a backpack was in high school. Here's what I did get:

Mr. Sketch markers! This set of 18 markers was the BEST part of my haul. I love, love, love these markers because they all smell totally delicious. The scent even lingers after you've used them on paper. I used to sit around and sniff the markers as a kid and I found myself STILL doing that the other day. =P My favorite is the brown..
I also got the Melissa and Doug Fashion Sticker Collection book for my little sister and me. It's a pretty cool book -like paper dolls but sticker form.
I thought this 8 pack of colorful R.S.V.P pens would be perfect for taking notes in class. While the colors are nice, the grip where I hold the pen really hurts my hand -it's too stiff. I recommend this for the colors and price but NOT when it comes to comfort.

I also got two packs of assorted construction paper (seen in first photo) for crafts and projects. This was a really good deal for all the colors and amount of sheets included.

Now what did I think of the CSN experience? Honestly, I'm kind of undecided. While all the items I bought were reasonably priced and cheaper than if I had purchased them in the store, I felt that lots of items were overpriced. I initially wanted to get a bag or shoes but holy moly they were expensive! But then when I would see something that was reasonably priced and pretty, it was out of stock. I swear, all the good purses were out of stock and that made me mad! I wish they'd just take the product down instead of having me click on it and see it be out of stock. =( All in all, it was a toss up. There are some very low priced items and then so really overpriced items -but I guess you'd find that anywhere.

Another thing I noticed was that while many things were up to date (I saw some Toy Story toys), there were lots of things that were out of date -especially when it came to the shoes and accessories. Also, the whole site is so incredibly random. It's like Forever 21 x100 -just too many items that it left my head spinning! I think that if they chose their products more carefully and left out all the random bits, the site could be really great. BUT, there are some hidden treasures. The search engine is your best friend. That's how I found all my products and I really do love all the products I got (except for the R.S.V.P pens.)

And for the customer service? PERFECT. The order shipped the next day and I got my first package within 2 or 3 days. At first, I was irritated by the shipping costs (LOL I hate paying shipping) but because many of the items were shipped separately, I completely understand why shipping was $8. The items were also packaged with paper/foam packaging peanuts. One thing that did bother me though (not really a customer service issue) was that their website was so slow. Sometimes, it would kind of "crash" and I'd have to open another window. I think the reason behind this is that they just have too many items on there which means more items to load which means more time waiting!

Would I order from them again? I probably would for the school and crafts supplies but I don't think I would for shoes or purses. I also saw some reasonably priced toys so I'd maybe come back for that. I had LOTS of pens on my wish list but I restricted myself to only 2 sets so I'd come back those. Something I'd definitely come back for though is their customer service. Customer service and fast shipping are extremely important to me -I liked that they gave me quick updates and that all my items arrived with lightning speed.

Have a look around their site. If you could order some things, what would you get?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I Want This..

I went to the mall today because I was having a bad day. (I know, horrible excuse -I really need to stop drowning my sorrows in shopping especially when I shouldn't be spending.) While I was browsing in Sephora, I spotted THE cutest falsies I've ever seen at the Make Up For Ever shelf. Now I already have a ton of falsies at home (and I've used two of them once or twice) so I didn't bother to get them since it would be a waste. I can't stop thinking about them though..
Aren't they adorable?! I've never seen a pair like them. $19 for a pair of lashes I'll probably never use just seemed too impractical so I skipped out on them. What do you think?

Buy them here.

Hearts & Hello Kitty @ Claire's

I stopped by Claire's last week to pick something up for my sister's Valentine's Day present and found some earrings for her -and me! I bought three pairs of the cute heart earrings above (on sale for $1.50!) for her, me, and for a giveaway.
At the register, I saw a bucket of $6 Hello Kitty earrings and rings (all the same design) so I scooped up another pair of earrings. I love Sanrio earrings and am always on the lookout for more!

Do you have any Hello Kitty/Sanrio jewelry? What are your favorite pieces? Have a fabulous Wednesday everyone!  <33