Friday, October 17, 2014

Swatch: Shiro Cosmetics custom gloss in Zero (moderate)

I've wanted this gloss for a very long time but never could have it since Shiro's Hallowe'en collection is a fleeting thing. (I fell in love with a swatch on the Shiro Facebook page.) And now it's here and it's all I ever wanted it to be.

Bare lips (sorry for the blemish today)
I had given up hope this eyeshadow would ever come back a while ago, which is why I ordered Master of Whispers as a gloss instead, figuring they looked comparable. They are similar, but Master of Whispers is more of a white base with a lilac sheen, whereas Zero has a very pale greyish base with a truly magical lavender-red sheen. 

This somehow results in Zero being more wearable--I don't look quite as frosted over or dead with Zero on, since sans immediate perception of the sheen, the gloss comes off as a neutralish pink on me. But dang, that sheen.

Angle to show the pretty, pretty sheen
I don't even know what to say. It is everything I ever hoped for and it is also pumpkin cheesecake. I would buy a backup tube right now if I could even remotely justify it. The dream that you wish will come true, there can be miracles when you believe, etc.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Swatch: Shiro Cosmetics lip gloss in Nic Cage Doing the Charleston in a Bustling Speakeasy

I've been debating whether or not to post swatches of the Nic Cage collection since the official ones (by this blogger, who totally rocks and I aspire to be as cool as) are really great. But in my indie life I've always wanted to look up more than one swatch of a thing, and since this blog is largely an exercise in creating resources for folks who were like me-of-a-year-or-two-ago, here you are, curious consumer.

Bare lips for reference

One coat of Doing the Charleston

Two+ coats
This gloss was a little trickier for me to capture on camera since a lot of my shots brought out a brownish-red in it when I find it to be a more purple-based burgundy red in real life. (For me, this and Red Wedding are similar depths of red with different undertones.) Hopefully that comes out here (and sorry for the finicky white balance). This gloss is a lovely colour, though it takes a little bit of work to get even coverage if you're going for the more opaque look.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Swatch: Shiro Cosmetics custom gloss in Master of Whispers (moderate)

Yeah, I have a Shiro gloss problem. (I may or may not have another on the way at this very moment. This is a no-judgment space, right?)

Bare lips
Master of Whispers

Sorry, my lips are flaking a bit and it shows. (I lost my holy grail lip balm for a few days. Never again.)

This is obviously very cool and frosty and a bit of a statement. I tend to apply this lightly, so if you have it in mind, sheer might be a good way to go. All of that said, this is one of my favourites. I like to pair it with a navy smoky eye to channel my inner Snow Queen.

And a bonus shot--out of focus and such to show the strong shift/shimmer happening in this gloss:

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Swatch + review: Performance Colors Zombie Bride

So--this blog has been on hiatus for a while for personal stuff + me getting super sick, but I want to leave that behind and continue buying indies, blogging things.

Let's get right to it.

Obligatory note about customer service: The turn-around time at Performance Colors was listed at one to five days when I ordered, and it took one day for my order to ship. So that was awesome. More than two samples were included, which was generous and also awesome. Shipping was pricier than some other shops (I paid about $9.50 CAD).

Bare lips for reference
Zombie Bride

Performance Colors describes Zombie Bride as "blue sheen and high reflection in a violet purple color." It's obviously not the easiest colour to pull off, but there is some warmth to the purple that helps it be at least a little bit forgiving. The blue sheen is strong and cold, though--but it makes this colour really gorgeous and remarkable.

The restorative formula itself feels like a cross between a beeswax balm and creamy lipstick. As I've said before and will again, my lips are a problem case, so this doesn't leave them any better for wear, but it doesn't leave them much worse, either, which is all I ask of lip products that aren't balms. The lipstick is scented with vanilla sweetened with stevia--it smells vaguely like dough for sugar cookies.

Perfomance Colors' lipsticks come in balm tubes, which isn't my favourite thing but is common in indies, since I gather it's more cost-effective. These lipsticks are $6 each or 3 for $12, so the price is certainly nothing to complain about. The tubes are cute and perfectly functional--I'm just the lazy type who likes to apply straight from a tube, which makes traditional lipstick tubes way easier.

I dig Zombie Bride and I'll shop at Performance Colors again--once I find some room in my lipstick drawer.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Swatch: Shiro Cosmetics custom gloss in Little Bird (moderate)

Have you ever wanted your lips to look really 90s, but with a little bit of extra shine? If you're pale as an "eggshell" wall like me, then Little Bird in moderate has your back.

Bare lips for reference
Little Bird

The shine is a little more pronounced in this picture than it is in real life, since I use indirect sunlight for most of my swatch pictures, but essentially Little Bird is a very brown-pulling "my lips but better" on me, which to me is very Rachel Green in early Friends. But slightly shinier. Less pale-as-heck skintones could probably rock this as a nude, but on me it's strictly retro. (Which isn't bad--I love all things 90s--but not as easy to wear on the daily.)

(I keep swatching glosses that I can't wear in my regular rotation, so worth noting: Shiro's Nic Cage Churning Butter is my perfect nude gloss. So. Maybe that next time.)

Friday, August 29, 2014

Swatch: Shiro Cosmetics custom gloss in Heart Piece (moderate)

How many days can I swatch a Shiro custom gloss a day? Too many days.

Bare lips for reference
Heart Piece
This looks fine in real life but in pictures it seems like I haven't quite filled in my whole upper lip line. Huh. Also, sorry--didn't balm up last night, so my lips are a dry, sad place. Luckily for me, the Shiro gloss formula is always kind to my crappy lip texture.

Heart Piece is a warm, light red with some very subtle sparkle, which I think would be gorgeous on many people who aren't me. I hold out hope I will find a way to make it work, as it's a lovely colour, but warm reds are not my friend.

Heart Piece the eyeshadow is hot pink with more prominent golden sparkle, but another thing I've learned from picking up too many Shiro custom glosses is that some pigments darken quite a bit in gloss.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Swatches: Hello Waffle Fey, Debussy, Envy, Galaxy Dust eyeshadows + Malva blush

In honour of Hello Waffle's sale tomorrow (check out Facebook for details) and because it's one of my favourite indies, here are some quick and slightly dirty swatches of a few Hello Waffle Eyeshadows I Like.

Before I even get into it, let's make it clear that the shadows I like most from HW so far are colour-shifting and/or sparklebombs so it's hard to represent them accurately. Observe the sparkle-blur:

Bottom left to top right: Fey, Debussy, Envy, Galaxy Dust
That said, I'll give it the old college try. (Or at least two-thirds of a try. I have work to do today!)

Top to bottom: Galaxy Dust, Envy, Debussy, Fey
The left half of these swatches are over Darling Girl Glitter Glue; the right are over UDPP. As you can see, these aren't at their best over a regular primer, but they still show up to the party. Also: Fey is made of glorious magic. Fey is one of my favourites ever.

Fey and Debussy
Envy and Galaxy Dust
How I'd describe these:
Fey is a peach with a prominent gold sheen (hard to show in photos);
Debussy is an almost sheer golden green glow;
Envy is a dark pine green full of (mostly blue) sparkle (see the first picture re: sparkle);
Galaxy Dust is a very curious blue with purple sheen that changes in various lights.

And bonus:
Malva, in sunlight
Malva, indirect sunlight
I received Malva in error in an order a little while ago (I went for Moon Princess and they're stocked next to each other; it's all sorted out with the owner, because her customer service is very awesome!) but anyway, I was surprised at how nice this turned out to be on my skin. I picked up way too much with my brush but I found this blush soft and blendable so it worked out. (Obviously I applied it before peeling off tape, hence the harsh lines.) If her new blush release has any other satin finish blushes that might suit my skintone, I'm going to give them a go. This one feels and looks lovely!

(I'll probably swatch this again in comparison to other HW blushes and add the more concentrated swatch beside--but hopefully this gives an idea!)

Do check out Hello Waffle's sale tomorrow and their new Fringe collection!