August 2013 Favorites/Hits & Misses: Powders, Pencils, Color, Foundations, Hair

The end of August 2013 has been absolute madness! After Beautycon, I was simply exhausted and my quick trip to Vegas this week to see Boyz II Men only distracted me further from filming. I am back with an epically long Favorites episode, though, so I hope it was worth the wait. I will be working on a full video tutorial + review videos of Chanel and Tom Ford's Fall collections as well as Michelle Phan's new em cosmetics products. Please feel free to share any other video requests in the comments section below!

Products Reviewed:
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Powder in 30
IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealer in Neutral Medium
Eyeko Black Magic Mascara
Eyeko Curvy Brush Mascara
Miss Hana Eyeliner Pencils
Giorgio Armani Smooth Silk Waterproof Eyeliner in Black
     *The pencil is labeled Smooth Silk WP, but the website still refers to it as Eyes to Kill!
em cosmetics Day Life Palette [full review and tutorial coming soon]
Chanel CC Cream in 20
Chanel Mat Lumiere Liquid Foundation in 40
Jouer Matte Moisture Tint in Nude
Hourglass Immaculate Foundation in Nude
YSL Youth Liberator Serum Foundation in B30
Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Shampoo Anti-Oil Astringent Formula
Clear Scalp & Hair Therapy Damage & Color Repair Conditioner
 **I ran out of time, but I am really loving my Armani Rouge Ecstasy + Shu Uemura Anti/Oxi Cleaning Oil ♥ Please check out my blog reviews for all details!

Makeup Worn:
Shiseido Sun Protection Compact Powder Foundation in SP30
Le Metier de Beaute Peau Vierge Correcteur Concealer in Shade 1 [Frais/Cool]
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Powder in 30
Cle de Peau Eyebrow Pencil in 204 + Holder
em cosmetics Day Life Palette [Eyeshadows and Blush]
Eyeko Liquid Metal Eyeliner in Black Onyx
Eyeko Black Magic Mascara
Giorgio Armani Smooth Silk Waterproof Eyeliner in Black
NARS Larger Than Life Lipgloss in Piree
Velour Lashes in Oops Naughty Me

Tom Ford Show Me the Pink [Fall]

Theory Len Tubular

Forever 21 [old]
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Shu Uemura Anti-Oxi Cleansing Oil Review, Photos

Makeup removal is a nightly ritual. I never forget to cleanse my face, regardless of the circumstances. I truly believe this habit has helped to keep my skin resilient over the last decade of makeup use. I recently switched up my routine and began using Shu Uemuera's Anti-Oxi cleansing oil to remove all my makeup and boost my skin's clarity. The anti-oxidation and anti-pollution formula helps rejuvenate skin to leave it smooth, radiant and youthful. My skin does look less dull and less yellow in the evening, which means the Moringa Extract must be working!

I discovered Shu Uemura when I was 18 and have used the brand's cleansing oils ever since. I have been most dedicated to the Fresh formula, despite the reformulation. In the last two years, however, I have tried all variations of Shu Uemura's cleansing oils as well as other brands. I have discovered that no other brands' cleansing oils can compete with Shu Uemura's on my skin. Those who have watched my YouTube video reviews since 2011 are well aware of this fact.

Now, I absolutely love how bright the green bottle of the Anti-Oxi cleansing oil is because it is easy to spot on my cluttered bathroom counter. Rest assured, the oil itself is clear and not neon green. Shu Uemura recommends 3 to 4 pumps per use, and that is plenty on my completely made up face. This means I can remove my eye and lip makeup as well as my foundation in one step with a handful of cleansing oil. I use only 2 pumps when I am wearing just base makeup.

I find that the Anti-Oxi oil has a thinner texture like my Fresh Cleansing Oil. It isn't quite as thin as the Fresh, though, making it more cost-effective and user-friendly on those with drier skin types. The Ultimat8, A/O, and Whitefficient are a bit richer in consistency, so I find those are best on my skin during the winter or when I am traveling. I have normal skin, and the Anti-Oxi feels soothing and foams up so well once emulsified.

The Anti-Oxi cleansing oil is suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin and has been ophthalmologically and dermatologically tested for safety. Since it has been allergy tested and is also non-comedogenic, I highly recommend this is the cleansing oil that all novices and pros try first. I love this so much, my friend brought me back a full-size 450mL bottle from his trip to Asia. You can purchase it now through Shu Uemura (shipping to US is free with a purchase of $50 or more).

Check out the Facebook contest HERE for a free sample of Anti-Oxi, and don't forget to stock up on your favorite Shu Uemura cleansing oils with the promotional 10% off coupon code RAESHU (non-commission).

Bottom Line: The Anti/Oxi Cleansing Oil has officially replaced the Fresh formula in my everyday routine!


Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipstick in Androgino (Beige 100) Review, Photos, Swatches [33 shades]

Giorgio Armani's newest lip color technology is encapsulated in the stunning red Rouge Ecstasy bullet. This new generation of lipsticks is finally arriving at counters, and it is the most expensive lipstick from the brand (priced at $34 USD each). The shea butter in the "Color and Care" formula claims to help strengthen and repair the lips. A couple testers were missing, but I did manage to swatch nearly every single color available in the line-up. Let's begin with the individual lip swatch and review of Androgino Beige 100, the neutral nude that stole my heart, after the jump!


Tom Ford Frantic Pink (02) and Wicked (06) Cheek Colors Review, Photos, Swatches

Tom Ford Cheek Colors in Frantic Pink and Wicked, $56 USD each, are two of my favorite blush colors. These silky, shimmering colors can be worn alone or paired with bronzer and are a pleasure to apply to the skin — especially with the Tom Ford Cheek Brush (reviewed here). Frantic Pink and Wicked are soft yet pigmented and finely milled as expected. Check out all the skin and face swatches after the jump!


IT Cosmetics Vitality Lip Blush Hydrating Gloss Stain in Inspiring Red Review, Photos, Swatches

IT Cosmetics is one of my favorite new brands. Their innovate and effective — yet affordable — products are taking the blogosphere by storm, and the praise is well deserved. Today I will introduce to you the paraben-free Vitality Lip Blush Hydrating Gloss Stain in Inspiring Red ($24 USD). I rarely wear shimmery red glosses, but I was pleasantly surprised to see how versatile this color was on my lips. Click to see swatches after the jump!


Kevyn Aucoin 'Iconic Eye' Look [Winged Eyeliner Tutorial]

Winged eyeliner is my signature makeup style, but I have not dedicated a tutorial to this effortless look in years, which is why today's feature is all about the classics. 
I applied Tusk, a nude, on the lids and Rose Quartz, a shimmering rose gold, all over the crease. I've been obsessing over this Loose Shimmer ever since I ordered it from Nordstrom, so I will review the product later this week. I mixed a little bit of the Sculpting Powder, a cool brown, into the crease for definition. Bone, an ivory, was applied on the brow bone and blended in with Rose Quartz for a smooth transitional finish. I finished with one coat of the Volume Mascara and false eyelashes to amp up the look. This look is incredibly flattering but natural enough and appropriate for any occasion. I hope you enjoy the tutorial!

Kevyn Aucoin The Eyeshadow Single Shadows in Tusk and Bone
Kevyn Aucoin The Loose Shimmer Eyeshadow in Rose Quartz
Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting Powder in Medium
Kevyn Aucoin The Precision Liquid Eyeliner in Basic Black
Kevyn Aucoin The Mascara Volume Mascara in Rich Pitch Black
Brushes Used: MAC 239 Eye Shading, MAC 227 Large Fluff, NARS 13 Large Dome

by Terry Eye Primer in 002 Neutral
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in 30
Chanel Double Perfection Powder Foundation in 30
Anastasia Brow Wiz Eyebrow Pencil in Ebony
Tom Ford Cheek Color in Frantic Pink 02
Dollywink False Eyelashes in No. 2 Sweet Girly
Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill WP Eyeliner in Black
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipstick in Beige 100

House of Harlow Sunburst Earrings in White

Guerlain A La Parisienne 263

Lululemon Power Y [old]

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Giorgio Armani Fall 2013 Kaleidoscope Collection Review, Photos, Swatches

The Giorgio Armani Fall 2013 Kaleidoscope Collection is available now at all department store counters! There are two Face & Eye palettes with pink-toned blushes and cool-toned eyeshadows as well as five new Eyes to Kill Intense Silk eyeshadows. To complete the bright eye line-up, Armani brought in six power reds and plums (half are limited edition). View all swatches below!
The Face and Eye Palettes for Fall 2013 ($88 USD each) are colorful double-tiered compacts. Blush is on the top level with a trio of eyeshadows housed below. I was wavering at first since I am partial to green eyeshadows, but Palette 1 has slightly better quality. The blush is more pigmented and the eyeshadows have a creamier texture with barely any fall out.

Palette No. 1 consists of a warm peach blush with a hint of pink and the eyeshadows are a dark navy blue with purple shimmer, a shimmering deep sky blue, and a cornflower with silver shimmer. My favorite of the three is the cornflower, which is highly pigmented and applied the most evenly.

Palette No. 2 consists of a pale pink blush with a deep olive brown with lots of golden shimmer, a cool forest green, and soft icy blue. The textures are not quite as smooth as Palette No. 1's, but the pigmentation is still top-notch (especially the icy blue, which I expected to be sheer). 

The Kaleidoscope Eyes to Kill Intense Silk Eyeshadows ($33 USD each) tend to be sheerer than the permanent variety that I love so much. They are an entirely different feel due to the high frost finishes and smoky bases, however, so the sheerness suits the style of colors featured.

  • Rose Popilla: This is much smokier than I expected and is by far the most unique of the colors I swatched. The base is a charcoal-mauve with a slew of multi-faceted shimmer that reflects mostly rose. This one can be layered or used wet to achieve full coverage. Pair with a smooth black eyeshadow for a sultry smoky eye. 
  • Gold Hercule: I love this golden lime green, which looks loveliest on tan and dark skin tones. There is a hint of smokiness in the base as well, which keeps it from looking too juvenile. This is lovely and wearable when paired with a brown eyeshadow like Burberry's Dark Sable.
  • Scarab Violetta: I was a little disappointed by this one, since I had expected to fall in love with it. It has to be layered more than any of the other shades to achieve an more vibrant and opaque base, but the lavender with silver shimmer is undeniably pretty.
  • Blue Beetle: This is the most noticeably duochrome of the five below on me. The medium-dark blue base is highlighted by a smoky purple base that leans slightly fuchsia at the edges. When layered, it does read more aqua (brighter).
  • Silver Chaffer: This light grey silver is the sheerest of the bunch. I personally think it is too grey to wear as a highlighter, but it would make a great smoky eye lid color since it is not as bright as a true silver.

The Kaleidoscope Rouge d'Armani Lipsticks ($32 USD each) have an exceptional, long-wearing formula that does not feather. I love how pigmented yet creamy they are.

  • #300 and #409 swatch more similarly on my arm than they appear on the lips, but #300 leans more orange while #409 leans more red. #410 is an incredible true red that will flatter any skin color, but it is permanent. 
  • The three plum shades are limited editions. #610 suits tan and dark skin tones so well because it has a brightening effect, almost a touch of raspberry. #611 is a red-based brown plum that is highly pigmented. #612 is a sheerer brick. 

Call my sister Patricia, the Giorgio Armani Counter Manager at Los Cerritos Nordstrom, at (562) 924-0940 if you would like to order any of these over the phone. She can ship to you for free and provide you with samples for you to try. Tell her I sent you!

Final Thoughts: The collection may feel more Summer than Fall, but the lipsticks balance out the shimmery pastels and make this one of the most colorful and fun releases from Armani in ages.
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Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipstick Preview & Swatches

Giorgio Armani makes some of my favorite lipsticks. The Rouge d'Armani and Rouge d'Armani Sheer formulas are rich yet hydrating, but the new Rouge Ecstasy is a completely new formula and sexy new packaging. The red lacquer cases with Armani's signature magnetic closure have slightly more weight than any of my Armani lipsticks, giving it a truly luxurious feel.

EDIT: To view all the swatches of the Rouge Ecstasy lipsticks, CLICK HERE!
Now available online at Giorgio Armani BeautyBloomingdale's, and Nordstrom

With Rouge Ecstasy, the Giorgio Armani laboratories push the boundaries of the exceptional even further with the first "CC" lipstick. CC stands for Color & Care, a new innovative hybrid product that marks the start of a new era in lipstick.
  • Care: Rouge Ecstasy offers the comfort and softness of a lip balm, leaving lips repaired and beautifully enhanced day after day.
  • Color: This velvety soft, everyday lipstick coats the lips in a saturated, ultra-luminous shades with impeccable hold. Application is simple, precise, and effective.
  • REVIEW: I discuss my experiences with the formula HERE!

First impressions: Lips must be freshly exfoliated for best lipstick results. Application is even and pigmentation of all the four I swatched is impressive on my mauve-tinged lips. Full coverage color in just a couple swipes! I like to swipe once across the top lip and another swipe across the bottom lip, then smooth out the color with a finger (or lip brush).

Swatches of Armani's signature shades Androgino Beige 100, Mineral Brown 200, Pop Coral 300, Four Hundred Red 400, and Eccentrico Pink 500 in store lighting are above while the same swatches taken outdoors two hours later are below. Coral 300 and Pink 500 were much brighter than I expected, so I will be going back to swatch all of the colors — particularly more natural coral and pink shades.

Rouge Ecstasy is available in 36 luminous shades, a broad palette of intense and vibrant colors to satisfy every desire. All of the Rouge Ecstasy shades are inspired by a particular memory or association for Mr. Armani, from Italy and Milan to the Red Carpet and Hollywood stars. Screen shots of stock images of all the shades from the Giorgio Armani Beauty website can be found below, but you can view my swatches of nearly every single color HERE!

The new Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC lipsticks are now available online. Shop on Giorgio Armani Beauty's website here or call Patricia, the Giorgio Armani Manager at Los Cerritos Center's Nordstrom, at (562) 924-0940 to preorder! She can ship your selections to you for free and will include samples for you to try. Tell her I sent you!
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