FOTD: What I Wore for Christmas and Beautybay Sale!

Hey everyone!

How was your Christmas? Did you have a good one with a lot of nice presents and food overdose? My Christmas Eve was quiet, but I did see quite some friends over Christmas Day and Boxing Day, so I would like to share the looks I did with you.

First and foremost is my Christmas manicure. I very seldom wear nail polish nowadays, but since D cooked on Christmas Eve and we were going over to some friends’ on Christmas Day, I thought I’d seize the chance. The polish is OPI Merry Midnight. It is from the 2009 Christmas collection, so it is rather difficult to find one now. I only found out about it this summer when I picked this shade for my pedicure back home, and I was lucky enough to find a bottle on Yahoo Auction in Taiwan (it’s the equivalent of EBay in Taiwan because it has been there for much longer). I don’t like to tease you with limited edition or hard-to-find items, so I am not going to write a separate review about it. As you will be able to see in the following picture, the polish is a jelly purple with multi-color shimmer and flakes. The first coat is stunningly uneven, un-sparkling, and uninspiring in general. I remember being so taken aback during my pedicure when the lady put on the first coat. I almost said:” you must have made a mistake! This is NOT the shade I picked out!” But after the second coat things get dramatically better. You do need more skills and experience to work with this nail polish, and I find it difficult to avoid some unevenness altogether (though nothing too concerning). Something else I don’t like so much about it is the fact that it doesn’t last as well on me as a typical OPI nail polish. I’m getting tip wear and some chips after just a couple of days, while normally OPI polishes last 3-4 days with minimal tip wear on me! I do hope OPI will bring the shade back with a better formula.

Now moving on to my Christmas Day makeup. I did a “classic” look with the Naked Palette. I used Sin on the inner half, Buck on the outer half, the lightest shade of NYX Rock and Roll on the inner corner, and smudged my lower lash line out with Gunmetal. I was also testing Tarte Exposed out and was pretty happy with it! On my lips it’s Chanel Rouge Coco Mademoiselle.

For Boxing Day I did something a bit more dramatic. I used my L’Oreal HiP duo in 106 Sculpted. The lighter shade all over my lid, and the darker shade on the outer corner, brought into my crease, and on my lower lash line. On the inner corner is Sin from the Naked Palette, Tarte Exposed on cheek, a bit of Bali Brown to add some dimension to my face, and MAC Sweetie on lips.

I have to report that the darker shade of the duo is really rather hard to blend, and there is some fallout. The fallout isn’t too concerning at all, but the lack of blendability is a pain. The lighter shade doesn’t pull orange on me though, so I’m happy about that. I wore makeup for 11-12 hours that day, and by the end of the day I could see some fading, but it was still OK. Man, you can see the print my glasses leave on my nose SO clearly in this picture (for some reason it is worse on the left side)! I might have to start looking for a decent concealer now.

Also, I’m still looking for a way to take clearer pictures of my FOTD. As what I have told you, we haven’t had a lot of natural light in Belgium, and the flashlight doesn’t always allow colors to be captured on photos as they are. I will work on this issue, but in the meantime I hope you at least get an idea!

Last but not least, Muffin the new kitten wants to wish everyone a merry Christmas and a 2012 with a punch!

She has been with us for a bit more than two weeks now, and she is a total sweetheart! I’ll for sure introduce her properly in the blog soon. She plays go fetch just like what Brownie used to do. Can you believe that?

Lots of Christmas love,

Sunny

Oh, and pssst I almost forgot to tell you about this! Beautybay.com is having a 10% off sale till midnight Wednesday (UK time, so it might be earlier/later depending on where you live. For example, in continental Europe, it would be 1AM on Thursday). I am a registered customer, so I received an e-mail with 15% off. The promotion code is the same though (XMAS), so I guess the system just checks if you are already in it. If you have been lemming for Cargo blushes for example, this would be a great opportunity to get some! What I LOVE about Beautybay is the fact that it doesn’t rip you off. A 25-dollar Cargo blush would cost about 18.60 euros, but the rate does change a little from time to time (or even every day?). Beautybay also carries Too Faced, Urban Decay, Bedhead, Bare Escentuals, and so on. I got some stuff myself, and will show you soon!

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Swatch, Review, & Comparison: L’Oreal HiP Metallic Shadow Duos in 106 Sculpted, 306 Gunmetal, 806 Gilded

After my good experience with L’Oreal Electrified, I felt the need to lay my greedy little hands on more of these HiP Metallic Shadow Duos. Since they are unavailable in Belgium (why, L’Oreal, why? Why can’t you love thy neighbor?), I turned to Makeupalley swap. I found this wishlist-only swapper who had something on her wishlist that I could part with, so I messaged her. It turned out that she actually put the wrong item on her wishlist, but decided to send the duos for me as a random act of kindness. I was such a sweet surprise that I didn’t know what to do with myself anymore!

Therefore, before I begin to show you the review and swatches, I have to say thank you, thank you, thank you to Sarah. According to her, her top three hobbies are makeup, knitting, and jewelry-making. She has two Etsy shops. One for knitting and spinning supplies, and the other for handmade jewelry. Now, I have poor hand-eye coordination and no patience, so knitting is really not my thing. However, I LOVE her jewelry especially because she pretty much only uses sterling silver. I have once bought something off Etsy because I find jewelry with bees and birds adorable. However, I couldn’t find anything that was made with sterling silver, so I had to compromise and get something that was not. I am very unfortunately allergic to anything that is not silver and gold, so I ended up wearing that pair of earrings only twice. Every time I tried, my ears would swell up painfully, and I couldn’t wear earrings for days afterwards. If you have the same problem, do check Sarah’s jewelry site out! I can feel that it is before long that I cave it to one piece or another!

Now, let’s move on to the most picture-heavy post of this blog so far, shall we? 😉

The lighter side of Sculpted (106) is a gorgeous shimmery plummy pink. I really like this color, and the texture/pigmentation perform pretty well. The dark side of this duo is a little tricky. It looks more purple/burgundy in pan, but from the swatch you can see it is almost black. It definitely leans warmer though, and the pink and purple glitter in it makes it more fun! I haven’t tested it out on my eyes so I can’t tell you for sure if there is fallout. However, I don’t have the impression that it is going to be the case from doing the swatches (or rather even if there is going to be fallout, it is not going to be dramatically bad). I do have to mention that this shade is slightly stiffer and the color pay-off is not as amazing as its lighter neighbor though. As this post goes on you will see this is consistent for all the HiP duos that I own. You can build it up rather easily, but it is a little more effort.

The closest colors I own to these two shades are Urban Decay Toasted and the left-column definer shade of Wet n’ Wild Comfort Zone, so I did a little comparison here:

As you can see, Toasted is FAR from the lighter shade, as it is not nearly as plummy. The definer shade of Comfort Zone is browner and warmer than the darker shade and less glittery.

Next on our list is 306 Gunmetal:

It is perhaps a little weird to name a green duo “Gunmetal (306),” but after swatching both shades, I can see that they have a grayish, smoked-out quality about them. The lighter side is a grayish olive green with a nice sheen. The darker side looks like an intense glittery forest green in pan. However, once swatched, the vibrancy of the green doesn’t transfer to skin. In my swatch picture you can see it is an extremely smoked-out green, though in person the glitter is much more impressive. Again, the texture is rather stiff, and it takes work to build it up. I know that the major complaint about this duo is that it looks very different in pan, and I have to agree with that. If you purchase the duo without having seen some swatches, you are likely to get something that is far from what you expected. With that said however, I personally like the colors (they’re green!) and I would like to see how they perform on lid!

I did a little comparison lining up all my greens next to the lighter shade (MAC Humid, MAC Sumptuous Olive, Urban Decay Mildew), and the right-column crease shade of Wet n’ Wild Comfort Zone next to the darker one:

I would say the lighter shade of Gunmetal is a blackened cross between Humid and Mildew. Next to the right-column crease shade of Comfort Zone, you can see the grayish greenish quality of the darker shade better. Also, the Wet n’ Wild shade is not nearly as sparkly.

Finally, I have saved the best for last with 806 Gilded!

The lighter side of this duo is a wow. It is a metallic true gold. Despite the fact that these duos bear the word “metallic” in their names, not many shades come out as metallic as this one. The texture buttery soft, and color pay-off more than amazing. If you put a little more pressure on your finger, the shade almost “melts.” Yup, that’s how buttery it is! For me personally, just this side makes the duo “worth it.” The darker side is a little less “deceptive” in this case. It is a grayish black with gold glitter, and it is what you get on your skin. Again, the texture is pretty stiff, and you have to work a bit for it to show up nicely. Something else that worries me a little is that I can already tell there will be some fallout. I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that it isn’t too bad!

Again, I did a little comparison for you. I swatched Urban Decay Half Baked next to the lighter shade, and Urban Decay Creep next to the darker one.

Next to such a true gold like this, Half Baked looks surprisingly bronzy, almost orange! I love doing comparison swatches for you guys also because I learn so much from doing them. Half Baked is one of my all-time favorite eyeshadows, and I have used it so many times that I thought I knew it very well. Next to this shade however, I have seen a different side of it! Creep is considerably cooler than the darker shade of Gilded, and the sparkly bits almost don’t come out next to its much more glittery counterpart.

Finally, I did a happy family reunion shot of all of my metallic duos! From left to right: Electrified, Sculpted, Gunmetal, and Gilded. This is the first time I used flash, because we really haven’t had a lot of natural light here, and I kept getting blurry pictures! I did make sure the colors are accurate though.

Bottom line: Despite the fact that I wouldn’t rave about the HiP Metallic Duos as a 10/10 product, some of them are definitely worth looking into. My personal recommendations are Electrified and Gilded, because the lighter shades of both are true to the word “metallic” in their names. Sculpted is nice to have especially if you like plummy pink. I can see how Gunmetal wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but from playing around with it myself, I can say it is more phenomenal in person than a lot of the swatch pictures you can find online. It would be good for a more understated green-themed smokey eye, especially if you have something else from the green family to add some pop!

Phew, that is one very dense post! I will definitely do FOTDs soon with these duos, especially with the upcoming holiday celebrations. Please stay tuned if you want to see how they do on lid! Don’t be shy if you have any questions regarding these duos!

So what do you think? Would you be picking any of them up? Do you like metallic shadows in general?

Stay tuned and stick around, folks!