Swatch & Review: MAC Cremeblend Blush in Tea Petal

The MAC Cremeblend Blush collection came out in March 2011, and I got Tea Petal in summer. Prior to this I didn’t really own any blushes, cream or powder. I have light-to-medium skin tone (around MAC NC30), and there is a natural pink tint in my cheeks. Therefore, I was happy doing only my eye makeup because that’s what makes the biggest difference for me. However, when my best friend HM went with me to the department store for my Bobbi Brown makeover, she spotted this at the MAC counter and pointed it out for me. Being a rookie in the blush department, I was naturally a little skeptical. I mean, it is the darkest of all 6 colors, and wouldn’t a cream be all greasy on me? However, the SA has already noticed us and HM was already asking questions, so I thought I’d better roll with it and let her try that on my cheeks anyways. As it turned out, Tea Petal is so amazingly natural on me that I decided to make it my first blush!

As you can see, Tea Petal is a brick red in pan. MAC describes it as a “mid-tone reddish brown (the website actually made a spelling mistake of putting “redish” instead of “reddish” *slaps MAC on the back of the hand*), but to me it’s more red than brown. As you can see, it sweats a little in pan despite the fact that I have kept it in a dark and cool drawer. However, as far as I can tell it has not affected usage. The texture is creamy, but not sticky or wet. It actually feels very comfortable on my cheeks, especially now when the weather is colder and drier. Since the cremeblend blushes are supposed to be more neutral and natural, even this darkest shade is hard to overdo. It is true that it is very pigmented, but it blends out very smoothly and evenly. If you want it to be more intense, you can always build it up. I have been using my fingers, but duo-fiber brushes apparently work very well stippling it on cheeks. It does fade by the end of the day (though I never wear a lot of it to begin with so maybe that’s why), but it doesn’t oxidize bad on me.

My only tiny problem with this blush is that it is not one of those “cream-to-powder” cream blush. It stays creamy on my cheeks, which is not a problem for me personally. However, if I try to highlight the top of my cheekbones for example, too much highlighting powder sticks to the cream and it is impossible to blend it out afterwards. I have tried to use a very light hand, but the same thing happened. I was told that my MAC 168 is not the best for the highlighting job, but I can actually highlight when I wear a powder blush. I guess I’ll either have to invest in a duo-fiber brush soon and try again, or invest in a liquid highlighter instead. Either way, at the moment when I wear Tea Petal I skip trying to highlight the top of my cheekbones. It’s not really a real-breaker, but I have to mention it so that you guys know what you’re looking at!

If you want to see Tea Petal in action (or any product I have mentioned for that matter), please click on its tag to see all the FOTDs that feature this blush.

Bottom line: I would recommend Tea Petal to people who are looking for a cream blush, particularly those with drier skin and medium skin tone (I don’t know how well it will show on darker beauties, and if you are lighter-skinned you might have to pay more attention when it comes to blending it out).

How about you? Where do you stand on cream blushes? Are you a fan or do you avoid them? Do let me know!

Sunny xx

FOTD: Purposefully Pink with Urban Decay Naked Palette

If you have read a bit about my blog, you probably know my best friend HM (for example, she was there during my makeover at Bobbi Brown this summer, and she picked out a bunch of products that I ended up purchasing). We’ve been partners in crime for 9 years now (jeez, how time flies). I’ve been very excited because she has recently relocated to Belgium with her husband, and they came to see me today!

To celebrate the occasion and make up for my lack of a FOTD last week, I did a look with the Naked Palette today. When I was swatching it for you guys earlier, I realized there are colors that are under-loved because I tend to stick to certain tried-and-true combinations. In the future, I would like to challenge myself to explore different ways of working with this beautiful palette.

Here’s a list of the products I used:

Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation in 53 Light Beige (I got it about a week ago and will do a review soon)
Bobbi Brown Sable on eyebrows
Bobbi Brown Bone to hightlight browbones
Naked Palette: Toasted on lid, Hustle in crease, Sin to highlight the inner corner
Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Gel Eyeliner in Blackest Black
Urban Decay 24/7 in Zero on my lower lash line, smudged out with Hustle
Maybelline Volum’ Express The Falsies Waterproof Mascara in Very Black
MAC Cremeblend Blush in Tea Petal on cheeks
MAC Harmony for contouring
Tarte Smooth Operator finishing powder lightly dusted over my face
(I got lazy and just used a lip balm on my lips)

Here is a close-up photo of my eye so you can see the shadows better:

I actually seldom use Toasted, and it is certainly the first time I use it as a lid color. I like how it is a rosy pink that doesn’t pull orange on me (because that’s unflattering). I’ve never highlighted my inner corners with Sin either (it’s usually Virgin that takes on the job), but it plays well with Toasted. For my crease, I first used my 239 to shade Hustle into my crease. I then blended out with my 217, but thought I could use a bit more intensity. Instead of going back with my 239 and blending everything out again, I barely dabbed my 217 in Hustle and intensified my crease a little more like that. The result is very natural (one of my pet peeves is seeing the border between eyeshadow and skin on monolidded girls. I don’t normally blend the edges with a different shadow, but I do make sure I blur them with 217), and I think I’ll try this again in the future!

Just another picture to entertain you some more. I goofed around with my camera after getting home (hence the scarf and coat), and I was trying to capture the shape of my eyeshadow better. That’s why my eyes are half-closed. I remind myself of Tango my Tomcat when he looks bored/superior! Also, please ignore the bump on my chin. It’s actually part of the remainer of my recent allergy attack!

OK, that’s enough goofing around for today! I didn’t have time to swatch the HIP duos today, because by the time I got home at 4:30 it was already getting dark (so happy the winter solstice is coming in a couple of days. I’m holding up OK so far, but would really love more light). I promise I’ll have the swatches up before Christmas though!

Stay tuned and stick around, folks!

FOTD: Fun with Wet n’ Wild Comfort Zone Duochrome Deliciousness!

Last night I went to a friend’s birthday party, and I seized the opportunity to test out the right column of the Wet n’ Wild Comfort Zone palette!

I was inspired by, again, Jen from From Head to Toe’s tutorial. She used Wet n’ Wild Night Elf, which was limited edition. However, the two main shades she used are also in the Comfort Zone palette, so I had what it takes to be a copycat!

Here’s a list of the products I used:

KATE Gel Eyebrow in BR-3
Bobbi Brown Sable on eyebrows
Bobbi Brown Bone to hightlight browbones
Wet n’ Wild Comfort Zone: the Definer shade on the right in my crease, the Browbone shade on the right on my lid, the Browbone shade on the left in my inner corners
Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Gel Eyeliner in Blackest Black
Urban Decay 24/7 in Whiskey on my lower lash line, smudged out with the Definer shade on the right
Maybelline Volum’ Express The Falsies Waterproof Mascara in Very Black
Vichy Normaderm Drying Concealing Anti-Imperfection Stick (just to cover some spots)
MAC Cremeblend Blush in Tea Petal on cheeks
MAC Harmony for contouring below my cheekbones and jawline
Tarte Smooth Operator finishing powder lightly dusted over my face
Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss in Nougat (I realized I forgot to put this in my U.S. haul picture)

I didn’t have time to take photos before I left, so all the photos were taken when I got home, approximately 5 hours later. Besides having to pop some gloss back on (I had drinks and some finger food at the party) and blot my nose, everything else was still what it was. Here is a picture of my eye:

You can already see the duochrome at play, since on my lid it looks reddish but on my waterline it looks green!

To show you the duochrome a bit more clearly, I took two pictures of my eye closed from different angles.

On the first picture it looks more green, and on the second one it looks more red.

I’m actually really happy with the way it turned out! The duochrome shade is said to be a dupe of MAC Club. I’ve swatched Club on the back of my hand a couple of times in the MAC store, but every time I thought it pulled way too red and muddy on me. The Wet n’ Wild shade was already better when I swatched it, since I didn’t have the impression that it’s muddy. However, I was still a bit cautious about it turning out wrong or too dramatic. It was a pleasant surprise when the look worked out just fine! The duochrome is unbelievably cool! It’s the first duochrome eyeshadow I own and I’m a bit over the moon about it. A word of caution: I did have a bit of fallout with both shades I used on my lid. You can maybe see it in the close-up pictures. However, it was partially my fault since I didn’t have enough time to clean it up properly (since I don’t use foundation, I usually do that with scotch tape). It didn’t get progressively worse throughout the night though, and since the sparkling particles are fine, it’s definitely tolerable (it’s minor compared to Sidecar in the Naked Palette, for example. I adore the shade but the fallout sometimes drives me up the wall). Both shades also pack a generous amount of pigment, much to my satisfaction.

I was trying to filly my brows with my Bobbi Brown Eye Brow Brush and the KATE Gel Eyebrow (it’s actually eyebrow gel, but KATE calls it Gel Eyebrow), but it didn’t turn out too well. The issue I’ve always had with this eyebrow gel is that it could deposit way too much color in one stoke, and it’s very difficult to blend it out. Also, there is a little gap on my right eyebrow which the eyebrow gel doesn’t do as much a good job filling as Bobbi Brown Sable. At the end, I had to go through everything with Sable again anyway.

I’m still a total newbie on contouring, but Victoria’s guest post on Temptalia is extremely helpful! I have the same problem as she does, which means if we do a fishy face our contour ends up way too low! I learnt to imagine a line from the top of my ear to the outer corner from my mouth, and that turned out A LOT better than the fishy face trick! I still have a lot to learn, but the post is extremely informative and a great place to start!

So that’s an FOTD for you! Sorry for the bad lighting. It was nighttime, and it took me FOREVER to take pictures in my hallway and bathroom without weird shadow in the pictures.

Hope everybody’s had a nice weekend! xx

FOTD: This Autumn, I’m Loving L’Oreal HiP Duo in Electrified

Hello out there!

I reviewed the L’Oreal HiP Duo in Electrified a couple of days ago. Since I was going to the theater with my ex housemate T and his grandmother last night, I thought I’d incorporate it in my FOTD so that you can see how it actually works on me.

I largely followed the lovely tutorial by Jen. Looking back, I could have darkened my outer corners a bit more, but since I wasn’t going to wear false eyelashes to balance the eyeshadow out, maybe the level of intensity was just enough.

This is a breakdown of the products used for today:

Bobbi Brown Sable for eyebrows
Bobbi Brown Bone to highlight my browbones
L’Oreal HiP Duo in Electrified for eyes, with the lighter shade over my lids and darker shade “wrapping” around the outer corners
Wet ‘n’ Wild Comfort Zone, the Browbone shade on the left column to highlight my inner corners
Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Gel Eyeliner in Blackest Black
Urban Decay 24/7 in Zero on my lower lash line, smudged out with the darker color of the duo
Maybelline Volum’ Express The Falsies Waterproof Mascara in Very Black
Vichy Normaderm Drying Concealing Anti-Imperfection Stick (just to cover some spots)
MAC Cremeblend Blush in Tea Petal on cheeks
MAC Harmony for contouring below my cheekbones and jawline
Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Bronze on top of my cheekbones
Tarte Smooth Operator finishing powder lightly dusted over my face
Chanel Rouge Coco Mademoiselle on lips

(For the products I haven’t got around to reviewing, I will definitely do so at some point so stay tuned!)

Here are some pictures so you can see the eye makeup more closely (please ignore the spot on my forehead):

From an angle, you see slightly better how the dark shadow wraps around the lighter one.

This is how it looks with my eyes closed. Don’t be deceived by my eyeline though. I’m monolidded so it actually takes A LOT of gel liner on my outer corners for it to show. However, I do tend to go easy on the inner half of my eyes.

One little oppsie moment that happened yesterday was that I forgot to tap my brush before popping the shimmer brick on my cheekbones. Since Tea Petal is a cream blush, way too much shimmer stuck to the blush. I couldn’t blend it out with the brush, so I had to rub my fingers till some came off. The setting powder also helped reduce the intensity though, so it ended up looking OK. Lesson learnt: TAP YOUR BRUSH before it goes anywhere near your face!

Voila, that’s the FOTD for you. Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend!

My first FOTD, inspired by xteeener and Bun Bun

Voila, this is my first FOTD. It is inspired by both the day look of this xteeener video

Day to Night Makeup: Gilded for Fall

and Bun Bun’s tips on defining the outer v for Asian eyes

Eyeshadow Tutorial for Asian Eyes Part 3 – Defining the Outer V

Products used:

Urban Decay Primer Potion
Urban Decay Naked Palette: Half Baked, Naked, Creep
NYX Rock and Roll trio: the lightest shade
Bobbi Brown Bone
Maybelline Eyestudio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in 950 Blackest Black
Maybelline Volum’ EXPRESS the Falsies in Blackest Black
MAC Cremeblend Blush in Tea Petal
Chanel Rouge Coco in Mademoiselle

Step by step:
First thing first: I primed my eyes with UDPP. I then used Urban Decay Half Baked on the first half of my lids before I added Naked to my “crease area” and blended it across my eye sockets. I added the first shade of my NYX Rock and Roll trio to my inner corners (believe me, highlighting your inner corners makes a difference, particularly when you’re monolidded. It really opens your eyes), and then I used a tiny bit of Creep in my outer V area. According to Bun Bun’s instructions, I should have picked a lighter color for my outer V. But then again I wanted a bit more drama, so I went ahead with Creep. I only barely dabbed my MAC 219 in the eyeshadow though, and I spent a lot of time blending. Once that’s done, I picked my MAC 217 back up and blended everything out again. I highlighted my brow bones with Bobbi Brown Bone. Since it’s an invisible shade I went along my brow bones instead of just the arch of my eyebrows. But then again my face is “flatter” so I need a bit more help. I lined my upper lashline with the Maybelline gel liner, using whatever is left on the brush for my lower lashline. I also smudged the lower lashline out with the tiny amount of Creep left on my MAC 219. For good measure I added 3 coats of mascara to my upper lashes and one to my lower lashes, because otherwise I have none!

I dabbed my finger (sorry, don’t have a stippling brush yet, but the upcoming US trip should solve that problem lol) in MAC Tea Petal and put it on the apples of my cheek. To be honest I prefer this to using a brush, just because when the SA at MAC did that for me on Monday, I ended up with more blush than what I’m used to. But then again she did two layers, so maybe that’s why. I also used a bit of the lightest shade of NYX Rock and Roll on the top of my cheekbones to enhance it another bit. My cheekbones are pretty high, but I like to play them up!

For my lips I used one layer of Mademoiselle. The color shows up funny on the picture though and I don’t know why (to be honest the colors in this picture is just weird)! In person it’s not at all shiny. It’s satin or even semi-matte. It’s also definitely not brownish!

Here’s another picture of my makeup after 8 hours, taken in my bathroom (lol). I only had my transparent lip balm on my lips, so you can compare with the morning picture to see what Mademoiselle does.

To be very honest I’m not entirely satisfied with how my eye makeup turned out. Maybe I should have used Darkhorse instead of Creep, maybe I didn’t define my outer V the right way, or maybe for my particular eye shape defining the outer V doesn’t do a lot. I will keep experimenting with it, but I still think it’s a bit weird to see the teeny tiny blended-out dark shadow at the outer corner of my eyes. But then again because of the complete lack of a crease, I always have to blend the edge of my eyeshadow out, including the lightest shade I use for the inner half of my eyes. Maybe that’s why? Hmm. Also, I almost never line my lower lashline with a gel liner. Since I did that today however, I decided to connect my upper and lower lashline at the outer corner. I thought gel liner is smudge-proof, but apparently NOT on the outer corner of my left eye. This is the interesting thing: if my eyeliner ever smudges on me, it’s always the outer corner of my left eye. It wasn’t bad though, and I was able to remove it with my finger. I guess even gel liner has its limits when it comes to monolidded eyes.

That’s it 🙂 Hope you enjoyed the pictures and do check xteeener and Bun Bun out!