Friday, February 25, 2011

I'm feeling brazen

In case you hadn't noticed, I am loving my Brazen pretties. So I had to use all of them today.
All photos in natural light.

I used:
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Be Mine- Brazen Cosmetics (blended into inner corners and browbone)
Tease- Brazen Cosmetics (majority of lid)
Miss Independent- Brazen Cosmetics (outer third of lid)
Vixen- Brazen Cosmetics (blended along outer edge and crease)
Organic Wear Jumbo Lash Mascara- Physicians Formula

Natural light:
For some reason the natural light photos are all washed out, the colors are actually much more vibrant.
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With flash:
The colors are more accurate in their vibrancy here.

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Blurry to show the sparklies
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And of course, I'm wearing Brazen's Make Out lip gloss on my lips
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I feel like going out and causing some trouble in my brazen pink-ness.

Brazen Cosmetics Review

I think I've fallen in love. With a lip gloss.
It all began with a photo on Etsy. When it arrived at my door wrapped in pink bubble wrap, I knew it was meant to be.

Brazen Cosmetics is my newest obsession, and the creator of the aforementioned gloss.

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Before I rave about the products themselves, I'll cover the basics.
Website: http://www.etsy.com/shop/BrazenCosmetics
I ordered my lovelies on February 8, and they arrived February 14.
They were packaged nicely- in a yellow envelope with the products wrapped in pink bubble wrap and tissue paper. Included in the package were two samples (one scent sample and one lip scrub sample) and two business cards. The products I ordered (all full-size jars) were in a cute cellophane bag.
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I ordered 4 full-size jars of eyeshadow and 1 full-size jar of lip gloss. The shadows and gloss are housed in the standard 5 gram jars. The shadows arrived with sealed sifters in the jars. The gloss and shadow jars have shrink-wrap around the outside. One of my jars did arrive without shrink wrap, but I didn't find that to be any sort of an issue.

I love the look of the packaging, especially with the silver stickers. The shadows have stickers on the tops and bottoms of the jars, the gloss has a sticker on the bottom of the jar.

Tops of jars:
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Bottoms of jars:
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Now for the actual products!

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Cocoa Loco- Sugar Lips Lip Scrub (free sample)
I really like this lip scrub. The sample amount is quite generous, enough for several uses. It smells chocolate-y, with perhaps a hint of coconut. The scent is nice, but not overwhelming. I inadvertently ate some of it, so I can tell you that it tastes nice too. A full size (approximately .5 oz/15 ml) costs $2.79. If you're looking for a lip scrub for a great price, I'd definitely suggest this one.

Hella Vanilla Scent Sample (free sample)
Etsy description: "Rich sweet creamy vanilla makes every girl happy. Does it get any better than vanilla, really?! Our custom blended scent is more of a bakery vanilla than your typical perfume. You will be obsessed, trust me!"
I received a little pink butterfly that smells like vanilla. It's definitely a nice vanilla, not the vanilla scent you'd find in a drugstore. 11 days after arriving, my little butterfly friend still smells nice. A full size (approximately .3 oz/10 ml) is $7.49

It is now time for you to prepare yourself for a silly number of swatch pictures.

Eyeshadows:
I ordered 4 shadows, all Valentine's shades. (Descriptions are from the Brazen Cosmetics Etsy store)

Be Mine (Candy Hearts collection): the quintessential darly baby pink, soft and girly. Opaque coverage with a pearl finish and a ton of baby blue sparkles. You will be the sweetest treat!

Tease (Screw Cupid collection): sweet yet sexy bubblegum pink with a red violet shift. Opaque, packed with color and sparkle. Be the belle of any ball this year with this tempting shade.

Miss Independent (Screw Cupid collection): feisty frisky burgundy shade with purple sparkles. Opaque, packed with color and sparkle. Show who's the boss with this hot color!

Vixen (Screw Cupid collection): scandalous sassy shade that makes all other shades jealous! Rich deep dark blackish reddish bugundy with a red shift. Opaque, packed with color and shimmer...this shade is so unique! One way it looks like purple/red, turn the other and you see the glowing red duochrome.

Tease, Miss Independent, and Vixen are now permanent colors, and are available in the etsy shop. Be Mine is currently unavailable. Full-size shadows run $4.99-5.49, the Screw Cupid colors are $5.49.

Are you ready for the swatches? I got a little excited and took way too many pictures.
All swatches done over Too Faced Shadow Insurance, photos in natural light.

Top row (L to R): Be Mine, Tease
Bottom row (L to R): Miss Independent, Vixen

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I love all of them, but Tease is my favorite hands-down. It's a fabulous pink with a nice blue shimmer. I have a weakness for pinks with blue shifts/shimmer. Vixen is also an awesome color. All the shadows apply and blend nicely.

Now, for my love. The lipgloss.
Here's the thing: I've never been a lipgloss girl. At least, not before I discovered this gloss. Every other gloss I've tried just didn't do it for me. Brazen's Passion Pot in Make Out blew me away. I bought it on a whim, and I'd liked the photos I'd seen of it online. I was expecting it to be more red, but I love it all the same.

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How Brazen describes their Passion Pots: Our PASSION POTS are delicious lip glosses that deliver. They keep your lust for long lasting color satisfied. This stuff rocks! Wear alone for a sweet stain of color, or layer over lipstick for a wide range of possibilities. We add lip-loving antioxidants vitamin E and meadowfoam oil for softness your pucker will thank you for!

And their color description for Make Out: Bust out this naughty lipgloss and get ready to pucker up! Woooooohooo! This is one fiesty shade! Cool opaque ruby red with super shine & mega iridescent sparkle (and a touch of mint essential oil), this will definitely up your vamp quotient and get you in the mood for some frisky business. Don't say we didn't warn you!

I LOVE the formula. Even though the Etsy listing calls it "sticky", I don't think it feels sticky, but it's not too slippery either. It has a slight mint scent that reminds me of a candy cane. It's pretty subtle scent-wise. It has a slight cooling feeling on my lips. It can be applied sheerly or opaquely, I've been wearing it opaquely for the most part. It's very emollient, between the lip scrub and this lip gloss my lips are wonderfully soft right now.

Swatch time! All photos in natural light.
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Applied sheerly on lips:
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Applied opaquely on lips:
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I love this gloss so much. It's love in a 5 gram jar. In this case, love doesn't cost much- a jar of this fabulousness is $4.99.

Not a single product from Brazen was a disappointment- I love everything I ordered, and the samples too. Sandi, the owner, seems like a great person and I enjoy ordering from her. I have already placed my second order with Brazen, and I'm pretty excited about it.
I definitely suggest that you check them out! Here's the link again: http://www.etsy.com/shop/BrazenCosmetics

Monday, February 21, 2011

Urban Decay Show Pony Shadow Box

Today, the sun came out for most of the afternoon, which was exciting for a variety of reasons. It was so nice to have a decent amount of light in my apartment without having to turn on any lights, and it makes swatching so much easier!
Today I swatched my Show Pony palette, which I ordered a few weeks ago from Sephora. When I ordered it, it was on sale for $20, but now it's on sale for $16. The Urban Decay Preen Shadow Box, available online at Ulta for $20, contains the same shades.

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The packaging is sturdy cardboard and stays closed with a magnet. I was skeptical of the magnet at first, but it does its job well. I'm not in love with the actual look of the palette's packaging, it seems a bit brash to me.

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For your $16 dollars, you get:
- Snatch Eyeshadow (peachy-pink with glitter)
- Painkiller Eyeshadow (turquoise shimmer)
- Mildew Eyeshadow (deep green)
- Flash Eyeshadow (electric purple)
- Smog Eyeshadow (deep bronze)
- Toasted Eyeshadow (copper)
- 24/7 Eye Pencil: Zero (black)
- Eyeshadow Primer Potion.
(color descriptions from Sephora)

Let's talk about formula.
Shadows: I primarily use loose shadows, so I'm not quite an authority on the formula of pressed shadows. However, I was pleased with the application of most of the shades. Flash was difficult to work with, it look a lot of work to build up the color for the swatch. Snatch has some chunky glitter in it, which can be a bit of a challenge.
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See the glitter?
Eyeliner: This pencil applies like a dream, and doesn't budge once it has had a moment to dry.
Primer: I haven't played with this much (yet), but I like the formula so far. However, I don't like the packaging. I much prefer the squeezy tube of Too Faced Shadow Insurance.

The swatch photos were taken in natural light, shadows applied over the Urban Decay Primer Potion.
Top row, L to R: Snatch, Mildew, Flash
Bottom row, L to R: Painkiller, Smog, Toasted
Side: Zero

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I'm quite pleased with this set, and it seems like a good deal for $16-20. I know many people already own the pencil, primer, and some/many/all of the shadows, but as someone who did not already have the above in their makeup arsenal it was a great purchase.
What are your thoughts?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Hello! I have a new challenge for myself.

My current goal is to start actually updating this blog. Many pieces of my life have fallen nicely into place recently, and I feel like I can finally commit to doing this. So, I'm challenging myself to post here at least three times a week. Three times a week doesn't seem like much, but it's so much more than what I've been doing ;)
I'm hoping that this will help me get into the habit of blogging again. I have a platter full of things I've been meaning to swatch and/or review, and plan to get everything off of said platter by the end of March.
I'm looking forward to posting more often!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Quick update

I probably won't get the bloggers listed on my last post for the blogger awards until Monday or so. I'm currently in part of the country that's been affected by the storm. We've been declared as being in a state of emergency, with schools being turned into shelters. So many people are without electricity, heat, and water right now. Luckily, my current residence still has water, heat, and power, but that might not last.
I hope you all are keeping safe and warm.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

My first blog award!

The lovely Meagan of http://ionadhtalamh.blogspot.com/ gave me my first blog award! Thank you Meagan!
Meagan is an awesome person with an awesome blog, which I suggest you go check out.


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1. Thank and link the person who gave you this award.

2. Share 7 things about yourself.

3. Award 15 recently discovered great bloggers.

4. Contact these bloggers to tell them about this award.


Alright, 7 things about myself:

1. My favorite job was working in a cupcake shop, which I still do seasonally.

2. One of my many passions is swing dancing- lindy hop, specifically. I started swing dancing about a year and a half ago, and have gone to swing dance events in 7 cities in 4 states thus far. A few weeks ago, I went with some friends on a grand mountain adventure, we ended up lindy hopping at an elevation of more than 10,000 feet. What a workout that was.

3. Approximately 12 years of my life were dedicated to classical ballet training. I do miss it, but my body couldn't take the demands of that lifestyle after I injured both knees significantly.

4. One of the most incredible experiences of my life was spending a month in the West Indies on an enthnomusicology trip. I bought a steel pan (steel drum) while I was there, and it lives in the living room of my apartment. I love having out in the open, because when people visit they often times end up playing with it.

5. I play many instruments, but oboe is my favorite. One of my priorities for the coming months is to spend more time playing the oboe.

6. I have a fascination with all things burlesque. I have some sparkly shoes that make me feel like a burlesque goddess, I just need to get better at walking in them.

7. I'm addicted to tea.


I'm having a hard time deciding on the 15 bloggers, so I'm going to post this now and edit it once I get my blogger list in order. Posting this now will force me to actually sit down and figure that out.

Edit:
Sometimes, I like ignoring instructions. So instead of 15 "recently discovered great bloggers", I'll give you a list of my 10 favorites, possibly with commentary.


1. http://ionadhtalamh.blogspot.com
Even though I'm probably not supposed to give this award to the person who gave it to me, I will anyway. She's awesome, her blog's awesome. It's the first blog I check when I sit down to click around on the internet.

2. http://ladyinatophat.blogspot.com
She does fantastic swatches. I have a weakness for swatches.

3. http://prettybottles.blogspot.com/
I haven't been following this blog for long, but there's just something about her attitude that I love.

4. http://lillianfunnyface.blogspot.com
Witty, creative, fabulous.

5. http://legothique.com
All-around great blog.

6. http://themoonmaiden-blix.blogspot.com
One of the first blogs I discovered when I began venturing into the world of wearing makeup. Her application skills make me swoon a bit.

7. http://eyeconicmakeup.blogspot.com
She's a great blogger, with that whole real human personality thing goin' on.

8. http://doubl3helix.blogspot.com
I just started exploring this blog, and I like it quite a bit.

9. http://sparklingluna.blogspot.com
Such great photos, fabulous looks.

10. http://www.makeupzombie1.blogspot.com
I feel like it's worth mentioning that she's from my hometown. Awesome blog.