Category Archives: Eyeshadow

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Vice 4 Eyeshadow Palette by Urban Decay – Swatches and Review

My first vice palette ever. I literally could not resist this one. The packaging is gorgeous. The contents are swoon worthy. There are an abundance of jewel tones and bright, shiny goodness. I couldn’t wait to get it and share it. This review will be covering the colors, wear and suggested use for the colors in this palette. There are some bummers but the greater majority are wonderful with the right tools and application.

To the people who are complaining that there aren’t enough neutrals in this palette… Why? Urban Decay is a company known for color. If you prefer to play it safe, there are 4 neutral Naked palettes and a shit ton more from other companies, for crying out loud. I suggest the BareMinerals 8.0 Posh/Power/Sexy Neutrals series. There are some seriously beautiful neutrals in matte, satin, and shimmering textures with pops of color, but i digress.

This Vice 4 is the palette that color lovers have been waiting for. Let us have our happiness too.

To clear up any confusion there may be lingering around, this fractal-ed edition is technically the 5th in the Vice series. The Vice LTD (bright green chartreuse cover) would have been the 4th, but UD decided to label this one for Holiday 2015 as Vice 4.

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Posted by on September 20, 2015 in Eyeshadow, On the Fence


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Smashbox Photo Finish 24 Hour Shadow Primer Review + Test

What This Is About
This is a review and test of Smashbox’s Photo Finish 24 Hour Shadow Primer. Because you are reading this I think it’s safe to assume that you know that a lot of cosmetics companies make claims about “extended wear” or “long wear” and promise performance along the lines of, “this will make your makeup stick like gum-in-hair until you want to take it off.” I will be testing the Smashbox primer for 24 hours and reviewing how it performs with various eyeshadows. I finally got off my lazy butt to write about this product now because I’m getting ready to re-purchase it. I don’t sing from the rooftops about this product but it is the best I’ve tried so far. I only write about stuff within a month if i love it and think that the world must know about it as soon as possible.That being said,  if something is good enough for a repurchase, it deserves a thorough review.

This post  also contains bits of frustrated venting and a mini lesson about product preservation.

At the very end, I will however be comparing this primer’s performance against the performance of two others – Urban Decay’s Primer Potion in Sin – and bareMineral’s Prime Time Eyelid Primer. Since taking organic chemistry, I have been reading ingredients lists more closely and realizing, “oh hey! I can draw the chemical structures for more than half of the shit on here!” or “!!! I know what chemical properties this has and what it might be doing in this product” …. I have no life. Will i be going through all of the ingredients? Oh hells no. I”m not THAT bored. Anyhow for those of you who don’t give a crap about ingredient lists (though you really should) the actual review starts now.

First Look
My box is a little beat up because it was rolling around and getting squished in my bag all day before i finally got to photographing it.

Ingredients, Front, Claims

Ingredients, Front, Claims

The whole tube is a little over 4 inches long and relatively simplistic silvery grey with printed black text. The plastic cap is nice and solid. It makes a satisfying clicks and clacks when i knock it against hard surfaces. I thought the cap was ceramic at first because it felt cool on my fingertips whenever i picked it up and sounded like a ceramic bead when bounced on my table top. However, when i bit it to check, my incisors left dents in the cap. First lesson learned: don’t bite the packaging. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on June 16, 2015 in Eyeshadow, On the Fence


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COSTCO, LET ME LOVE YOU MORE – Beauty for Cheap(er)

My fellow savvy shoppers out there know the pain of looking for better deals or waiting for sales. Ebay, Amazon and other online retailers are kind of sketch and require tons of research and review reading. Then there’s online Costco with random little treasures.

The local drug dealer in all things food. And soon to be all things beauty? You’re probably used to thinking of Costco as your source for cheap nutella, toilet paper and kb socks but they now pack some pretty impressive (and prestigious) beauty items. Forget the 20% Sephora Sale for your staples, check out Costco first. I’ll just let the comparison screenshots speak for themselves. Retail Left, Costco Right. As always, click on the pictures to enlarge them.

But seriously, Costco. Add more stuff ples. Let me love you more and throw money your way instead of at Sephora or department stores. These were just the things that caught my eye. The beauty section also includes Chanel, Jane Iredale, more sisley stuff, more  brand name products and stuff for hair. But I don’t know anything about hair products so I dind’t bother doing price comparisons. Head and Shoulder for days. These are products that i’ve had my eye on or ones i know to be “cult” products that many people are still interested in and/or repurchase upon finishing.

One of the main drawbacks is that they have a high turnover rate. Once something goes out of stock, it may or may not be restocked.

First Up: Make Up

Picture1Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer (the box says it contains 0.63 oz. i don’t know where the 0.28 oz. came from)

  • $48 for 0.63 oz. = $76.19/oz.
  • $33 for 0.63 oz. = $52.38/oz.
    • only shades available are SX03, SX05, SX06, and SX11
  • 31% savings

Picture4Clinique Long Last Lipstick Trio

  • One tube (0.14 oz.) for $16 = $114.29/oz
  • Three tubes for (0.42 oz.) for $30 = $71.43/oz
    • only available in a multi-pack with Sugared Maple + Blushing Nude + All Heart
  • 38% savings

Picture8Clinique Chubby Stick

  • One stick (0.1 oz.) for $17 = $170/oz.
  • Three sticks (0.3 oz.) for $35 = 116.67/oz.
    • only available in a multi-pack with Two Ton Tomato + Super Strawberry + Mighty Mimosa
  • 33% savings (basically buy two get one free)

Picture9Dolce & Gabbana Smooth Eye Colour Quad

  • $61 for 0.16 oz. = $381.25/oz.
  • $40 for 0.16 oz. = $250/oz.
    • Only options available are Smokey, Femme Fatale, and Desert
  • 34% savings

Picture10 Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Eyeliner

  • 1 pot (0.1 oz) any color for $25 = $250/oz.
  • 2 pots (0.2 oz total) for $37 = $185/oz
    • only available in a multi-pack with Black Ink + Sepia Ink + mini liner brush
  • 26% savings

Skin Care

Picture5Eve Lom Cleanser Balm

  • $135 for 6.8 oz = $19.85/oz
  • $100 for 6.8 oz = $14.71/oz
  • 26% savings

Picture6Sisley Black Rose Cream Mask

  • $162 for 2.1 oz = $77.14/oz
  • 100 for 2.1 oz = $47.62/oz
  • 38% savings

Picture11Philosophy Hope in a Jar Moisturizer

  • $44 for 2 oz = $22/oz.
  • $25 for 2 oz = $12.50/oz.
  • 43% savings

Picture12Clinique Moisture Surge Intense Hydrator

  • $38.50 for 1.7 oz = $22.65/oz.
  • $30 for 1.7 oz = $17.65/oz
  • 22% savings

Picture13Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector

  • $76 for 1.7 oz = $44.71/oz
  • $60 for 1.7 oz = $35.29/oz
  • 21% savings


Picture2Kevyn Aucoin Concelaer Brush: $21.99 vs $32 = 31% savings

Picture3Kevyn Aucoin Soft Buff Powder Brush: $38.99 vs $60 = 35% savings

Picture7Clarisonic Mia 3 (Aria) Cleansing System: 149.99 vs 199 = 25% savings

Qualifier: Costco is by no stretch of the imagination a makeup maven’s playground because fancy asses like me  lust for bright colors and wacky hues, but it’s got the basics. Part of the trade off with whole sale places is lack of selection. You sacrifice choice for lower prices. Different people prioritize one over the other.  Think of the Costco beauty section as a luxe studio apartment: the essential are present and there are some very nice basics. *cough cough eve lom cleanser* The stuff the carry are popular ones that cater to the majority, so my apologies if you are super pale or super dark and i got you excited about the KA Skin Enhancer but they don’t carry your shade. Also, the selection of goods that different, physical Costco locations carry will vary. The one i frequent carries covergirl, loreal mascaras and bourghese beauty in store. If i want to restock on bareminerals powder foundation i have to drive alll the way to another location… which is only 20 minutes away or so.

Yes, the multipacks are a pain sometimes. You might run through several packs for the Super Strawberries and end up with a couple Tons of Tomatoes. It kind of sucks if you’re a repurchaser but you can always gift the other colors or do stuff with them. I remember hating the Wild Cherry that came in the Capri Sun juice multi-packs…. so i would trade at lunchtime with a friend for delicious inarizushi.

Do note: Costco stuff is for members only but there are ways around that :3


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Make Up For Ever Artist Shadow ME 744 (Poppy) Review and Swatches

Make Up For Ever Artist Shadow ME 744 (Poppy) Review and Swatches

As always, the preface is just background information or rambles about why i decided to pick up a certain product so feel free to skip this whole first section and go directly to the review.

If you’re wondering “Who in their right mind would buy a metallic, tomato red eye shadow?!” this following section is for you.

I’ve been in a classic-red cosmetic mood the last month or so, starting with my acquisition of Smashbox’s Be Legendary Lipstick in Bing. I didn’t have a red lip liner to match despite the fact that i have 5 or so other red lipsticks. I had been using UD’s ozone for literally everything because it was doing a pretty good job at it’s, well, job. After getting Bing though, I got the itch to find a red lip pencil to make it easier to do a sharply-define red lip, so i started poking around, looking for a good red, lip liner. By a stroke of Sephora’s sale section serendipity I got my hands on 6 full sized pencils from OCC’s Cosmetic permanent line of Cosmetic Colour Pencils for a whopping $22. Total. I literally could not resist a deal like that.(Full sized pencils alone retail for $16 each.) I went, “Eh screw it,” forked over the extra 6 dollars for the entire set and got NSFW, a “true balanced red” + 5 other pencils, some of which were in interesting colors.

These pencils are marketed as multipurpose for eyes, lips face and body….  BUT red based shades have a little disclaimer (*) at the end saying that the color is not recommended for use around the eye area. This cautionary line is directed for people who have allergies/sensitivities towards red pigment, more on that here. Anyways, long story short, I tried using NSFW as an eyeliner but alas, it smudged and ran like a famished dingo was after it. It barely stay put for 4 hours which just won’t do as far as my eyeliners are concerned (on the lips is a different story).

I decided that I needed a matching (or brighter) red powder to set it (same concept as foundation and setting powder) so I looked into ME-744 Poppy by MUFE and Exhibit A by NARS which are both bright, orange-based, reds. After weighing a bunch of pros-n-cons of each choice, I ultimately decided on MUFE’s ME-744 Poppy for a variety of reasons which i will get into. While there, I accidentally picked up MUFE”s Aqua Cream in #8 which I reviewed *almost* right away because i became instantly smitten by it. (In my book, reviewing something the following weekend is down right FAST and reserved only for stuff that I truly love). Anyhow, acquiring Aqua Cream #8 sorta rendered the point of getting 744 Poppy to set NSFW moot because the Aqua Cream is so effortless and sticks really damn well. But I love red so i kept it all.

I’ve linked reviews to all the red stuff I’ve mentioned except for NSFW and the rest of the OCC pencil set because it has 6 pieces. SIX!  I have a lazy personality on top of my habitual procrastination tendencies so there are still two colors i have not tested and written about yet. I refuse to post the review until all colors are accounted for so yeah…. It might still be a while. Anyways, sorry for that long intro. The review for Make Up For Ever’s Artist Shadow in ME – 744 Poppy begins now.


ME-744 Poppy on top.

First Look
It comes in temporary (read: shitty) packaging as a refill pan, but that’s okay, because cheap packaging keeps the cost of the product down at a reasonable range. You can buy a permanent compact for it for a whooping $1! There’s also a giant 28 pan palette for $14. I’m eyeing that one. I know that MUFE packaging in general is very economical while retaining professionalism, and i admire that, but a little voice in the back of my head can’t help but grumble that this is drugstore level. Think Maybelline eyeshadows with their clear tops and crunchy black plastic. Hell, never mind the drugstore insult. L’Oreal has some pretty nice packaging.


Looks almost orange in this lighting.

The letters “ME” denote the finish of the shadow: Metallic. The other Artist Shadows all have various letter(s) in front of the number code to categorize them by finish (ie: I for iridescent, M for matte, S for Satin, D for Diamond). 744 is the actual code “name” of this shadow. “Poppy” is just the nick name for convenience’s sake in case you are horrible at remembering number sequences like me. It much easier for you to remember that I’m wearing “Poppy blended over Mandarin with Buttercup in the inner corner,” than it is to remember that I’m wearing 744 blended into 722 with a little 400 at the inner corner.” Take notes Inglot. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on March 2, 2015 in Eyeliner, Eyeshadow, Face Product, On the Fence


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Quick Look: Ember Lining


One class was cancelled today so I was super productive and used that extra morning time to wash brushes, organize my stuff and paint my eyes.



This post is the result of me wanting to test some new stuff that I’ve been procrastinating on reviewing.



How To:
1) Prime
2) Pat down a layer of orange eyeshadow. At the crease line, blend it up into the skin, not out . I used MUFE’s Artist Shadow in I-722 Mandarin which is marketed as a blush due to potential irritability, but I live dangerously. See this review here for the explanation.
3) Paint on a medium thick line with a golden colored gel/cream/liquid/anything that will go opaque . I used MUFE’s Aqua Cream in shade #11 and a ultra thin liner brush.
4) Draw on a thin line with black liner. Keep it as close to the lash line as possible and wing it at the edge. Note: gel or cream work better. I struggled to get the Stila liquid liner to go opaque black on top of the aqua cream. It took a couple of layers and drying.
5) Line the outer corner + outer third of the eye with a damp brush dipped in a dark-colored powder shadow. I used NARS Dual Intensity Eyeshadow in Subra.
6) Mascara of your choice. I screwed my lashes up so I’m too embarrassed to even name what I used.


The end result should look something like this on both eyes, hopefully. Variations in finished product are natural as there are a fk ton of different eye shapes.



Grab It for $16! Ammo Eyeshadow Palette by Urban Decay w/ Review and Swatches

Grab It for $16! Ammo Eyeshadow Palette by Urban Decay w/ Review and Swatches

What This is About
Guess who’s a cheapskate that gets things a thousand years too late when its on being-discontinued-super-sale!

Me. If you didn’t get that question right you ought to be ashamed of yourself. But you can be a cheapskate too because the Ammo Eyeshadow Palette is on sale again! The skull covered palette (which contains the new formulation of UD’s eye shadows) has been lowered from $34 to $16 which probably means its going to be discontinued for a length of time again. The last time i bought a ton of stuff from the UD site was years ago when they were discontinuing their old formulation and packaging of eye shadow singles – the ones in the matte grey containers with the star on the lid. I got each single for i think $5? Something cheap or i wouldn’t have bought enough to qualify for free shipping. I do remember that they were at least 66% off. It was my first foray into the exciting world of non-drugstore makeup.

I’m cheating a bit with this review because I got my ammo palette on Black Friday of 2014 during the online sale for $10 which is kind of a steal. Plus had free shipping that week! I know there were a couple of other times during 2014 when they were offering the Vintage-Pistol version for $10 but i didn’t feel like paying the additional shipping fee, nor did i feel like spending $50. Happily, i got my hands of this so i have more wacky colors to add to my thrice-over lifetime collection of of eye shadows. Sadly, there is no free shipping this time around. And in case you’re wondering, I haven’t reviewed it until now because I’m a lazy procrastinator.

Anyhow this is a detailed review of the “Vintage” Ammo Palette by Urban Decay with swatches and breakdown of each color. My palette is in the old packaging with the old cover art (pistol firing flowers and swirls) so i’m assuming that it also contains eye shadows with the old formulation. However, after playing around with my friend’s current version of the palette (which apparently features their “pigment infusion system”) against my “vintage one,” i honestly have not been able to tell the difference between the two in a single-blind test, with the exception of two colors which i will talk about. I had my friend apply corresponding colors from our two palettes to each eye and wore them around trying to test if there were obviously discernible differences.

I will be reviewing my palette in as much detail as i can without going insane.Hopefully – because the vintage and current ones are so similar – it will help you decide whether or not to get the current generation of the ammo palette. If you have already decided that $16 is a steal enough to buy on impulse, have at it and enjoy!

Others of you may need some convincing and a truck ton of details. Let’s begin.


First Look
Mine still has the clear plastic fishbowl-like-box which i have lost the picture for. Opps. This is what happens to procrastinators, kids. Learn well. I don’t have the ingredients list either which i am bummed about because the formulation has apparently changed. As far as i can tell though, only two colors really benefited.







The palette is made of black cardboard with printed metallic detail + 3D velvet accents. I like the vintage design better because I’m a fan of avant garde-y swirls but the current version has a skull composed of various little things. Google it or read about/see it at Temptalia. Christine at Temptalia is a lot more succinct and professional at I am but i disagree with her on enough points and have quite a few of my own to feel like i need to write a whole review. Anyhow, the palette is shelf shut by a magnet closure that feels very secure. It might even survive a few drops on carpet though i really don’t want to find out. I forgot to take a picture of size comparison again so just know that its 5′ x 4′ and less than half an inch thick. It looks like a very sleek notebook.


Inside there’s a nice sized mirror framed by more of the swirls in metallic, no velvet to be found here. There are 10 colors arranged in two rows. All the ones on top are darker shades (crease colors/definers), all the ones on bottom are lighter (all overs/inner-corner-highlighters) unfortunately there are no matte/satin shades for those who like a natural brow bone highlight because UD is trying to get you to buy a naked basics palette, probably. The colors in each vertical column are complementary which is helpful for the cosmetically clueless or the brain-dead beauty. There are just some days when certain palettes annoy the crap out of me because i’m having a crisis:  I’m short on time and can’t decide what colors to pair. This set-up takes out a lot of the guesswork. The Ammo Palette  could be repackaged and sold as “Colorful Eyeshadow for Dummies.”

Shadows + applicator (vintage)

Shadows + applicator (vintage)

First things first, i got rid of that sponge tipped applicator. Just kidding. It has its uses. I use the skinny side tip to apply Oilslick as a liner when I’m having a lazy maintenance day and don’t feel like washing brushes. The new version has a single ended paddle brush which is quite decent for packing color on and smudgey liner but because it only has one end, you’ll have to clean it thoroughly to avoid muddying up weird colors. The brush is synthetic so it’s easy to clean with a alcohol wipe but some of the colors are rather pigmented to be careful. I get the feeling most people buying this palette will already have a mini horde of brushes though i could be wrong.

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Posted by on February 23, 2015 in Eyeshadow, On the Fence


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Quick Chinese (Lunar) New Years Makeup Look: Triple Red

Today is an excuse to pile as much red on my face as possible.  I thought I’d share the resulting look. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Chinese culture, more red = more luck/prosperity/health/higherGPA (wait… what!?)

I started with my eyes, primer first as always (Smashbox 24 Hour Photo  Finish). You can’t see it on my weird half mono lids but I put down a layer of The  Body Shop’s color surge eyeshadow in Golden Cinnamon up to my crease. I followed with a few stokes of Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Cream in shade 8, painting a thick-ish cat eye on my upper lash line (with an arced liner brush).


The only product on my lips is OCC’ s Colour Cosmetic Pencil in NSFW.  It’s so nice in every way, I hope to get the review of NSFW and its siblings done soon. I have 6 colors to test.  Blegh.


Occ pencil in NSFW

After my lips were done, I cleaned up edges with some makeup remover, sharpened the edges with concealer, and followed with my foundation routine.


I have no idea why my nose looks red, Stupid camera

Lastly I used Make Up For Ever’s Artist Shadow in ME-744 Poppy (review here) as blush. Poppy is an intense, vibrant orange-based red straight or of the pan. As you can tell (hopefully), I applied it quite sparingly.  My skin is already yellow-toned.  Had I not diffused Poppy out, I could probably pass for Pikachu.

Anyhow, Happy Sheepy Year!


Posted by on February 19, 2015 in Eyeliner, Eyeshadow, Face Product, Lips, Paint By the Numbers


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