Sunday, December 5, 2010

Long Overdue Post: Wonderstruck swatches

Sometimes, life throws a curveball. That certainly can be said about my life the past few months. A frustrating and unfortunate event resulted in another large re-evaluation of my life, and I've made some large decisions. I'm happy with those decisions and the altered path I'm traveling now. I'm not sure where I'm going, but I'm certainly going to do my best to enjoy the journey. I'm getting better at being in touch with what I need to be more well-balanced. I'm currently residing in a small town in the Pacific Northwest, and took an adult ballet class yesterday morning. It's been a few years since I took a ballet class, and it was great to do that again. Growing up, I spent a lot of time in ballet studios- I took classes and trained for about 12 years. (This is why I love Aromaleigh's En Pointe collection so much).

Anyway, Miss K of Aromaleigh was kind enough to send me a sample set of Wonderstruck to blog about. As a lover of Alice in Wonderland, I was very excited about this collection. Does anyone else love the made-for-tv version of Alice in Wonderland with Whoopi Goldberg as the Cheshire cat? Admittedly, I also loved the new Tim Burton version.
One thing I love about the Wonderstruck collection is that every shade is extremely wearable. I've found that in some Aromaleigh collections, there are shades that I honestly don't know how to go about creating looks with and feel a bit intimidated by them. However, all the colors in Wonderstruck are fabulously easy to play with.
For the sake of time, I've numbered the swatches instead of labeling each with the name of the shadow.
The number/name correlation is as follows (by row):
1)We're all mad here 2)Impossible things 3)Curious dream
4)Drink me! 5)Pool of tears 6)Looking glass
7)Opiate advice 8)Curiouser and curiouser 9)The wrong alice
10)Flamingo-go 11)Pink portent 12)Hearts a' plenty
13)Rule forty two 14)Tattered & grown 15)Melancholy maiden
16)Mimsy 17)But this is my dream 18)Spot of tea
19)Wonder-ous 20)Fiddlesticks 21)Tunnel vision
22)Just a-head 23)Temper-temper 24)Frumious
25)Pass the tarts

All swatches over Too-Faced Shadow Insurance, all photos in natural light.

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My favorites are Hearts a' plenty, Fiddlesticks, Frumious, and Pass the tarts. If there are any shades that you'd like to see more photos of, just let me know in the comments!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Aromaleigh Midsummer Look

Here's a fairly subdued look, mostly using colors from Aromaleigh's Midsummer Night's Dream collection. I believe most of the collection is sold out, but there may be some still available in the Aromaleigh Vault sales ( http://blog.aromaleigh.com/blog/a---vault-sales/ )

I used:
Virtue- Aromaleigh
Fairy- Aromaleigh
Flora- Aromaleigh
Drama Queen Green- Aromaleigh
Too Faced Shadow Insurance

All photos in natural light.

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Also, Aromaleigh will be releasing THREE more collections. There are swatches of one of them, Mythos, on the Aromaleigh blog ( http://blog.aromaleigh.com/blog/2010/10/skin-swatches-of-the-mythos-collection.html ). The collection looks gorgeous! The other two collections are Wonderstruck and Spells!, inspired by Alice in Wonderland and Harry Potter, respectively. I'm going to go drool over the photos of Mythos now.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Two Aromaleigh looks

I seem to be getting into the habit of doing looks, photographing them, and then not getting around to uploading them. So here are two looks that I've been meaning to upload for a while. The first one is one of my favorite glitter liner looks so far, the second has one of my current favorites in terms of liners- Aromaleigh's Drama Blue. I really love Aromaleigh's Drama and Drama Queen liners. On to the looks: all photos in natural light.


Look number one!
I used:
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Physician's Formula Shimmer Strips Mascara
Indelible Eyeliner Sealant- Aromaleigh
Bellflower- Aromaleigh
Heartleaf- Aromaleigh
Valentine- Aromaleigh

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Look number two!
I used:
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Physician's Formula Shimmer Strips Mascara
Wish- Aromaleigh
Viviane- Aromaleigh
Cascade- Aromaleigh
Mariposa- Aromaleigh

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Now, time to crop and choose photos from my first attempt at what can best be described as an art look. A look that I wouldn't wear out (at least not to anything but perhaps a costume party), but is simply an experiment of color. Do you ever create looks not to wear out, but to just play with the colors?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Physicians Formula Eyeliner Review

Do you ever come across a great product, but then never end up using it?
That seems to be my experience with the Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Gel CreamLiner from Physicians Formula (what a name, right?)
After seeing so many great reviews of the eyeliners, I was excited to get a chance to try them out when I could finally get my hands on them a few months ago. I immediately swatched, tested their wear, and decided they were wonderful. How many times have I actually used this product since I bought it nearly 4 months ago? Once. It's a great product, but I just never reach for it.
I picked up the set intended for brown eyes. Right now you can order it online on Ulta for $8.00 instead of the usual $10.99. I bought mine at CVS for about $10.

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I really like the packaging, especially how it snaps together or apart.

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It reminds me a little bit of legos.

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Usually, brushes that come with cosmetics are pretty sub-par. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the brush that came with this set.

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Natural light. I was impressed by the pigmentation and smoothness of the liners. Soo creamy! After I let it set for a minute or two, I tried vigorously rubbing my finger across the liners. They didn't budge.

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With flash to show the sparkles better.

I was definitely impressed by this product, yet haven't been using it as much as I thought I would. I've used the black once, and the others have only been swatched. I tend to use my mineral eyeshadows as liners, and never think to grab one of these. I've been using a lot of dark blue liner lately- my go-to look these days is a neutral look with the Drama Blue liner from Aromaleigh. If you're looking for some nice gel/cream liners for a good price, I definitely recommend these. I definitely don't regret buying them, I just need to make myself use them more!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Rainbow eyes

I really like the way this look turned out, and think I'll try variations of it in the future. I rarely use the sealant from Aromaleigh, but did for the liner in this look. It ended up a little flaky, but I think I just need to practice getting the consistency right. I love how vibrant the sealant made the colors.

Photos in natural light.

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I used:
Tigrilla- Aromaleigh
Mariposa- Aromaleigh
Cricket- Aromaleigh
Forget me Not- Aromaleigh
Sylph- Aromaleigh
Indelible Eyeliner Sealant- Aromaleigh
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips mascara


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On the road again...

I've been working on moving across the country (again), and am now in a hotel working on a few posts. I finally found a good way to organize/store/pack my makeup for moving/traveling as often as I do. It all began with a trip to Office Depot, but I'll fill you in with pictures and such in the next few days.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Dear Aromaleigh,

I'll let you in on a little secret: a year ago, my idea of makeup was putting on some mascara, but only for special occasions. Then, at the beginning of December, I decided to order from Aromaleigh after seeing so many gorgeous looks created by the lovely ladies on a forum I was a part of. I instantly fell in love. With the arrival of my first order came the beginnings of my new relationship with makeup. Before using Aromaleigh, I saw makeup as something that people used to cover up their flaws- something to hide behind. Then, I fell down a rabbit-hole of glorious color and sparkle and realized that makeup could be so much more than that. I discovered that makeup can be used as a celebration of self. That you don't have to think that makeup makes you more beautiful to enjoy using it. That women that know that they hold great beauty without makeup can still brighten up their days with a little (or a lot of) sparkle.
As sad as I am to see Aromaleigh close, I am grateful for all it has introduced me to. If you told me a year ago that I would own and love binders and boxes full of makeup, I wouldn't have believed you in the slightest. Although Aromaleigh gave me the golden ticket to enter the wonderful world of mineral makeup, my journey has since expanded. Aromaleigh started this journey for me, and the journey is not over even though Aromaleigh is closing. I have more Aromaleigh than I could possibly use up in 10 years anyways, so I have plenty of Aromaleigh sparkle left to enjoy.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Ciao Italia swatches

Miss K sent me samples of the Ciao Italia collection to review, and once again she has created a lovely collection. I have spent a significant amount of time in Italy, and this collection made me reminisce about the beauty that can be found there. Right now, it's also making me crave some tiramisu.

Swatches done dry over Too Faced Shadow Insurance, photo in natural light.

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My favorites are Bacio, Fico, Biscotti, and Rosmarino. I also really like Melograni, Fragola, Lampone, and Malaga.

The sample set can be purchased at http://blog.aromaleigh.com/blog/a---vault-sales/

Friday, July 23, 2010

Toucan update

It's been a busy and exciting time in the life of the toucan. I've been keeping busy with many adventures, including attending a fantastic project runway inspired event, going hummingbird watching with a friend who is doing research on the adorable birds, dancing the night away (on several occasions) and generally soaking up life and enjoying every minute.

Things that will be posted soon:
Review and swatches of a Physicians Formula product
Mini review of a mineral makeup company that hasn't been mentioned here before
Swatches of a new collection

Also, I recently learned that Meow Cosmetics has an eyeshadow named Toucan. I think it's about time for me to order from them, I need that Toucan shadow.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Wishing on Orchids with Caelia

I'm alive! And I can finally breathe again, after a nice round of antibiotics!

I absolutely adore the look I did today. I tend to have a hard time doing soft looks, but this one was quite successful.

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All photos in natural light.

I used:
Wish- Aromaleigh
Orchid- Aromaleigh
Caelia- Aromaleigh (Lost in Faerie)
Sylph- Aromaleigh (lower lash line)
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips mascara

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I'm glad I was finally able to come up with a look that works for days when I need to keep it a bit more subtle. I usually hate the more neutral/soft looks I try. This is still pretty colorful, so I should probably come up with an even more neutral look. When I need to wear a neutral look, I usually wear practically no makeup (as in, only eyeliner and mascara). It's about time I learn how to do neutrals.

What are your favorite colors for neutral looks?

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Lost in Faerie now available

The collection that I raved about from Aromaleigh is now available for purchase. I adore this collection and had a hard time narrowing it down to a reasonable number to purchase in full size.
Everything is available at http://blog.aromaleigh.com/dormantdream/
Samples are not available individually, only as a full set.

On another note, my asthma has kicked it into high gear the past week, hence the very short posts. I'm planning on going to urgent care today, so hopefully things will be better soon.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Aromaleigh closing

Some unfortunate news: Aromaleigh has announced that they are closing.
Info is on their news page http://www.aromaleigh.com/aromaleighnews.html
I'm exhausted at the moment, so I can't think of much to say.
I imagine I'm not the only one considering stocking up on a few things before they're gone. Is there anything you're going to buy massive amounts of?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Lost in Faerie swatches

Today I received a package from Aromaleigh, consisting of samples of the yet-to-be released Lost in Faerie collection.
As impressed as I was by the last collection Aromaleigh released, Victoria's Revenge, the new collection blew me away. Lost in Faerie contains some truly drool-worthy shades. I love all the different types of glitter and shimmer in the collection, everything from iridescent shimmer to chunky silver glitter, and plenty of colorful varieties in between. My sister, a MAC addict, was visiting with me while I swatched, and she literally stopped mid-sentence and stared when I swatched Meliora, it has a gorgeous iridescence that didn't come through in the photos. She exclaimed a few things not suitable to type here when she saw Loxy.

Now for the photos. All taken in natural light, all swatches done dry over Too Faced Shadow Insurance.

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Anybody else loving this collection as much as I am?
At the moment, there is no set release date, but I imagine it will be out fairly soon.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Hurry and grab these for 50% off!

I did a few quick swatches of various Aromaleigh colors while contemplating my next Aromaleigh order. One color that I'm definitely getting in full size: Plush Romantic. It's an incredible color that you really should see in person.

All swatched dry over Too Faced Shadow Insurance.

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(Indoors, natural light)

Every single one of these shadows is 50% off until 11 PM EST 6/22!

I decided to head outside to see these in direct sunlight, and it made me exclaim, "Holy sparkle!" The photos don't do justice to the awesome sparkle.

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Now I have to go argue with myself about how many purples one toucan could possibly need.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hot charcoal with a side of torment

Torment is the first Aromaleigh color I've come across that let me down. On the website and even in the sample bag, it appears to be a brilliant metallic red. However, it didn't quite come out that way when applied. I'm going to try this look again, but do some foiling to see if that helps the color.
That being said, it's still a nice color, just not what I was expecting.

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I used:
Charcoal- Aromaleigh
Torment- Aromaleigh
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Physician's Formula Shimmer Strips Mascara


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I just couldn't bring myself to give up on the look I had imagined, so I tried putting Hot Hot Hot (Aromaleigh Rocks! glitter) over it. It was my first attempt at using glitter as anything more than a liner, so it's a bit uneven. I used Aromaleigh's Indelible Eyeliner Sealant to apply it. This brought me much closer to the look I was trying for.


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Does anyone have a suggestion for a metallic red eyeshadow?

Update

First of all, I'm sorry for being MIA lately. It's been a bit of a roller coaster recently, but after spending much of yesterday driving through the mountains and taking in the fresh air, I've finally gotten back to feeling like myself again. I came to some huge personal realizations on my drive, and I really needed to spend that time to get in touch with myself. So many things have happened recently that I hadn't taken the time to reflect on, but those things were life-changing and I definitely needed to figure out how they had changed me, and how I had remained the same. I'm usually terrible at taking time for myself, so I'm trying to work on that.

Now on to the makeup. Today I will be working on finally getting a few of my recent looks up. Now that I'm in a much better mental state, I can actually focus when I sit down to post. I hope all of you can understand my lack of posting recently, but that is something that is going to change. A recent order full of gorgeous colors reminded me of why I started my adventures in makeup in the first place, and with that in mind I am excited to start this new chapter in my life, filled with color, sparkle, and a newfound understanding of self.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Just one picture and some words.

I had a lot of fun with photography today.

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I'm finally getting things somewhat organized- after health issues, moving, more health issues because of moving, job hunting, job interviews, and general life. I purchased a few products I'll be reviewing soon, which is something that I haven't done in this blog yet. I also have a few looks to post, I just haven't gotten a chance to sort through and crop all the photos yet. I've gotten behind on reading others' blogs, so I'm going to work on that now and should be able to get some posts up tomorrow.

Hope you've been having a great week!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Bamboo Whimsy

I'm so glad to finally have time to post again! Moving is now officially one of my least favorite activities.
My birthday is on Sunday (June 6), can any of you guess how old I'll be?

Now on to the look.

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I used:
Bamboo- Aromaleigh
Mourning's Whimsy- Aromaleigh
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Physician's Formula shimmer strips mascara

I love how gloriously creamy bamboo is!

Please excuse the stray hairs and the uneven lighting.

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Victoria's Revenge

I was lucky enough to receive a sneak peek of the new Aromaleigh collection, "Victoria's Revenge", and Miss K certainly outdid herself this time! I can't wait to do looks with all these fantastic colors. I got a bit picture happy with these swatches, I took a grand total of 133 pictures, yet they still don't quite capture how pretty many of the colors are.

I would also like to point out how much I love the way Aromaleigh is packaging things these days. The tissue paper and sticker are quite adorable.

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Now for the swatches, all dry over Too Faced Shadow Insurance, natural light.

Starting at the top of my arm:

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I ADORE Poison Utopia.

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Ruthless Indulgence is another one of my favorites.


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The whole swatch-covered arm:

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I love how the collection has such a wide range of colors. What do you think of the collection? See anything you'll be adding to your makeup collection?