Author Archives: megansmakeupmuses

ColourPop: Give it to me Straight

As you can probably tell if you follow my blog, I’m a little bit addicted to the 12 pan eyeshadow palettes from ColourPop.  The quality is typically really good, the colours are pretty, they are cruelty free and the price is right.  So, when ColourPop released the ‘Give it to me Straight’ palette, I purchased it impulsively.

I would say the quality of this palette is in keeping with the other pressed eyeshadows in ColourPop’s range.  I have seen comments from people online who were a bit disgruntled with the release of yet “another” neautral, warm toned palette, but I actually really like the way this palette has been curated.

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Firstly, I feel like the range of formulas is really balanced between matte and shimmer.  There are 6 matte shades ranging from a pale cream to a dark, chocolate brown with a nice range of depth in between.  There is 1 matte-based glitter shade (BS), which is my least favourite formula, and then 5 shimmery shades.  In terms of shade selection there are some more neuatral browns, some very warm tan and copper shades and then some deeper berry tones.  I can get some very diverse looks from this one little palette which makes it great for travel.

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Row 1 swatches: Matter of Fact, Up front, Straight Up, BS

I have found the darker shades to be the weakest in the palette.  There are two shimmers which are a little flakey to the touch which are ‘Forthright’ and ‘Be Blunt’.  They are beautiful colours and very pigmented but I think they are best used with some fixing spray to avoid fallout.  Also the matte colours ‘TMI’ and ‘Actually’ are dry to the touch and kick up quite a bit of powder when you dip into them.  They are pigmented but can be a little patchy if you over-blend them.  Saying that, this is me being REALLY picky for the purpose of this review.  I love this palette and find it works so well for every day wear.  I have no problem using just this palette every day.

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Row 2 swatches: Frank, Candid, Forthright, Downright

If I were to compare this to other palettes in ColourPop’s range I would say it is a combination of the types of shades offered in the ‘Double Entendre and the ‘You had me at Hello’ palettes so if you own either of those palettes you probably don’t need this one.  I do own all three palettes but I don’t regret the purchases at all.  I have packed this for travel and loved it and will be taking it with me again on my next trip in a few weeks.

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Row 3 swatches: Truth Hurts, Be blunt, TMI, Actually

Look, this is a US$12 palette.  We aren’t talking sheep stations here so if you are looking for a pretty little palette and you like these shades, then I say it is well worth the money.

Have a glorious day!

Physician’s Formula: Happy Booster range

I own two products from the Happy Booster range and I will admit that the packaging and the heart imprints on the powders really suckered me in.  These look cute – but do the products work?  In Australia, Physician’s formula is not what I would consider a super budget friendly brand.  If you are going to pay $20-$25 for a drugstore product, you want to be sure it is worth it!

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Considering that the cute aesthetic of these products is the reason I purchased them, let’s address the packaging first.  These compacts come with a brush and mirror.  Although the heart indentation and shiny pink base is pretty these are super bulky.  The mirror is a handy addition but the brush is terrible and I would only ever use it in an absolute pinch.  I would have rather they ditched the brush for a more streamline (easier to store!) compact.

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Happy Booster blush compared to a ColourPop blush compact

Now for the actual products.

The Glow and Mood Boosting Blush that I own is in the shade ‘natural’.  It is a pale pink shade with a satin formula.  This is a subtle blush to be sure.  It is easy for every day wear as you can really slap it on without too much thought and you won’t get crazy clown cheeks.  To be honest, I find it almost needs a bit of building up  to show, even on my fair skin.  I don’t find it is overly long lasting but it does get me through a work day without disappearing completely.  I can’t imagine that this would work on skin any darker than light to fair complexions.

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Happy Booster Glow and Mood Boosting Blush in Natural

The other product I decided to try is the Glow and Mood Boosting Powder in ‘translucent.’  I wasn’t sure what to expect with this one, but hoped it was a glowy finishing powder – and so it is.  For a moment I was really disappointed with this product as the first time I used it I could see micro glitter on my face.  EEK!  But don’t panic my friends, the glitter is an overspray.  Is it truely translucent though?  I don’t think so.  It is glowy but it also has a very pale, slightly pink base pigment that gives a slight cast on the skin and I imagine this could be a bit ashy on people with darker skin tones than mine.  The glow is very subtle – too much so to really be used as a targeted highlighter but I enjoy using this as a final step to finish my contour, blush and highlight for a really blended, glowy look.  I would compare this to the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders (if you are familiar with those).

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Happy Booster Glow and Mood Boosting Powder in Translucent

So, do I think that these Happy Booster products are worth the money?  To be honest, not really.  If I had my time again I would have used that same money on something else because I have very similar products from other budget-friendly, cruelty free brands that cost half the price.  These are nice enough, but they aren’t anything super special.

Have a wonderful day!

ColourPop: In-Nude-Endo Highlighter palette

I purchased the In-Nude-Endo palette impulsively right when it launched having only tried one other pressed powder highlighter from ColourPop previously and it has not disappointed.  The packaging is a sturdy cardboard with the shade names on the back and under each pan, and each pan contains 3.25g of product.  The package design is simple but pretty and despite containing six highlighters it is a compact palette.  N.B. This palette does not have a mirror.

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Sturdy cardboard packaging and the pans are easy to depot.  (N.B. This image makes the shades look more cool-toned than they are in person.)

I need another highlighter like I need a hole in the head BUT the formula on these highlighters is really beautiful: as good or better than any in my collection!  The powders are super soft, finely milled and pigmented.  You have the capacity to sheer them out for a very wearable glow or build them up if you want something more dramatic.  There is no actual glitter in these powders which is great.  I can’t deal with glitter in face proaducts.

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Swatches: (row 1) Glad You Came, On the Loose, Fine Line, (row 2) On Tempo, Morning After, Losing Sleep

On the face these blend really well and I don’t find that they particularly emphasise texture or fine lines.  I’m in my mid 30’s now and sometimes highlighters can be quite aging but the powders from the In-Nude-Endo palette melt into the skin and look quite natural.  I haven’t found a dud shade :-). I tend to lay the colour down first and then buff it into the skin in circular motions with my brush and this works really well.

The colours look quite dark in the pan but when you swatch them they seem lighter in tone.  As such I feel like I can make five of these work on my fair skin tone, particularly when I mix in some of the lightest shade called ‘Glad you came’.  I imagine the same could be done in reverse if you have a darker skin tone and want to use ‘Losing Sleep’ to darken things up a bit.  I suppose the benefit of a palette like this is it really does allow you to make your custom shade.

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ColourPop: In-Nude-Endo

I appreciate the colour selection of this palette.  You have a pearl, a gold, a champagne, a mauve/rose, a rose gold and copper/bronze.  If you have a big makeup collection there is probably nothing really new on offer in this palette for you, but the quality is excellent.  If you have a fair to medium skin tone and you owned this, you wouldn’t really need any other highlighters.  For me ‘On Tempo’ is the most unique shade as a cool, mauve/rose tone.  This colour has the potential to be a little ashy but I really love it with a cool-toned eye look.  If you have an extremely light or dark complexion this may not work for you – but such is the case with almost every face palette on the market!

Overall, I find these wear really well for me.  I have combo skin and live in a tropical climate but even in the humidity these don’t melt off my face as so many powders do.  In my opinion this palette is a great buy.  ColourPop is a very affordable, cruelty free brand and I really don’t think you can go wrong with this palette if you are in the market for some new highlighters.  You will spend less on this whole palette than you might on a single, high end highlighter and the quality if very comparable.  I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Have a great day!

 

Things I don’t Love: The Natural Nude Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Shadows

Full disclosure.  I purchased this palette for three reasons that didn’t really have anything to do with the product inside.  1) the packaging is super cute, 2) I love the ‘warm nude all-in-1 shimmer strip palette for the face’ from the same range and 3) I got it on sale.  This may explain some of my disappointment with this palette.  But I digress.

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Top: All-in-1 face palette, below: eye enhancing palette

 

The Natural Nude Eye Enhancing Shimmer Strip palette is a mini shadow palette that contains nine warm, nude, shimmer shades.  It is marketed as containing eye enhancing shadow shades and a liner shade, and as you can see from the swatches, the dark liner shade is certainly the most pigmented shadow of the bunch.  Pigmentation is my main gripe with this palette.  The shadows are soft and pretty, but they are very firmly pressed and I had a hard time building up any kind of real pigmentation on the eye.  Plus, the colours are all SO SIMILAR on the eye that it is hardly worth having nine to choose from!  And being all shimmers, this is not a stand alone palette for me.

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Natural Nude Eye Enhancing Shimmer strip swatches… very similar!

I really was unimpressed by this palette.  I found the colours, such as they were, faded on me quite quickly and it really is accurately named in being ‘natural’ and ‘nude’ as this is certainly “no makeup” makeup.  I also own the ‘Warm Nude Shimmer Strip All-in-1 face palette‘ from this range and I LOVE it as a highlighter.  In my opinion it also works much better as eyeshadow too than this actual eyeshadow version!   Plus there is a better range of colours in the All-in-1 shimmer strips too.

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All-in-1 Shimmer strips palette and the Natural Nude eye enhancing shimmer strips.

Another con for me is that the strips of the eyeshadow palette are not separated and each colour strip is really narrow so it is hard to pick up discrete colours with your brush.

Basically, I don’t love this.

The ‘Natural Nude Shimmer Strip Custom Eye Enhancing Shadows’ retails for $24.95 in Australia. WOW.  That is expensive!  It contains only 7.5g of product and if I had paid that price for this product I would have been extremely disappointed.  Honestly, order a Revolution Beauty or ColourPop pressed shadow palette for half the price and you will be so much happier!

Have a wonderful day.

p.s.  Why do Physician’s Formula have to name their products such LONG names!!!

ColourPop: Lip liners

Now that I am a mum, I don’t wear lipstick as regularly as I used to, but when I do wear lipstick, I routinely wear lip liner too.  My lips are quite heavily lined and I find that a lip liner seems to help all lipsticks look smoother when applied, last longer and reduce the colour running outside my lip line.

I do have a specific preference when it comes to lip liner formula though.  It needs to be creamy and pigmented.  While I appreciate that I am in fact drawing onto my mouth with a pencil, I don’t want it to feel that harsh!  The ColourPop lip liners really fit the bill for me.

These lip liners are in pencil form with the plasticky outer covering that seems like you may not be able to sharpen it… but you can!  All the pencils in this range are packaged in white with the colour marked on the tip.  These are beautifully pigmented and nice and creamy.  You could certainly wear these on their own or, as I often do, just topped off with a gloss.  They last really well and are super comfortable.  Under a lipstick they make any formula appear more opache and certainly increase the longevity of anything you wear over the top.

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Swatches (from top to bottom): BFF, Chi, Oh Snap

I have two qualms about this product though.  One is that the pencil caps can be a little loose and often fall off which is annoying as becuase the colour is marked on the pencil end, you inevitably want to store them cap end down.  The other complaint is that as these pencils age and dry out slightly the product shrinks a little and the whole pencil centre can slide out.  This isn’t a disaster for me, but it is annoying, particularly if you are storing them cap side down!!

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Do either of these issues impact on the functionality of the product on your lips?  No.  But they aren’t problems I have with other lip liners in my collection so are worth mentioning.

As far as lip liners go, I think I still prefer my Essence lip liners – they are cheaper and equally as good quality without any of the minor packaging concerns.  Plus, I can buy them at my local chemist so can swatch colours before purchase which is convenient for me.  But, ColourPop has a large range of colours so if you are placing an order, I would certainly say it is worth giving these a go.

Have a glorious day!

ColourPop: Take Me Home eyeshadow palette

Here is a little bit of honesty for you.

I like small, cute things.  You know, minis.  Tiny things that are normally bigger but now have some novelty value because they have been reduced in size.  So when I saw the ‘Take Me Home’ palette on the ColourPop website I was immediately attracted to it because it was a little guy compared to their previous palettes.  Cute!!

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Palette size in comparison to a store credit card

So, this little palette comes with 6 shadows at 1g per shadow.  While the palette is physically smaller than other palettes in the range, the shadows pans are bigger than the ColourPop 12 shadow palettes where each shadow is 0.85g each.  (For your information a full size single shadow is 1.5g).  The packaging is a sturdy cardboard (which I prefer to plastic), and also had a mirror.  The physical size of the palette is moderately bigger than a credit card, but not by much.

There are a range of warm toned shadows in three formulas offered here including 3 mattes, 1 matte-based glitter shade, and 2 metallic shades.

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Swatches: Issues, Side Tracked, French Kiss, Salt Water, Popular Demand, Bitter Better

If I worked for ColourPop there are two changes I would make to the way this palette is curated.  Firstly, I would make ‘Side Tracked’ a purely matte shade.  I love the tone but I don’t love the glitter.  When I’ve worn this one I don’t find that the glitter transfers SUPER well to the lid, but it is pretty.  I think a sticky base would certainly help.

The other change I would make is to swap ‘Popular Demand’ for a matte cream shade.  For my skin tone, that would make this a perfect little travel palette.  ‘Popular Demand’ and ‘French Kiss’ are a bit similar so I think that you could make do with just one.

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In terms of the quality, the mattes do kick up a lot of dust when you dip your brush in.  If you tap in lightly and then tap off the brush it is fine but it is a bit messy.  The shade ‘Issues’ in particular is loosely packed.  While they are dusty, they aren’t chalky.  Overall, the quality is really quite good.  BUT if you own the ‘Double Entendre’ palette then you don’t need this one too.  The shades are very much in the same colour family.

In relation to value for money – I think it is much better value to buy the ColourPop 12 pan palettes for $16 rather than this one for $12 (I think it is currently on sale for $10).  Although the pans are bigger here, I prefer the novelty of choice and the 12 pan palettes are still very compact and great for travel.

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The ‘take me home’ shades are very similar in tone to ColourPop’s other palette, ‘Double Entendre’

I like this ‘Take me Home’ palette but if I had realised before I purchased it how similar it is to the ‘Double Entendre’ palette, then I would have given it is miss.  Saying that, I have created some really pretty looks with this little guy and it is now in my travel ‘go bag’ because it is so small and convenient.

Have a great day!

Things I don’t love: Australis lip liners

Welcome back to my ‘things I don’t Love’ series where I discuss products I didn’t like, or that just didn’t work for me.  This week’s focus is pencil lip liners.  Now, I was initially excited to try these lip liners from Australis, as I enjoy my Australis face base products so much and was keen to try other things in their range. As soon as I swatches these lip liners though, I knew they weren’t going to be my thing.

In a nutshell these are hard and waxy.  Boo!

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swatches: Lady in Red (top) and Kiss Me Quick (bottom)

Yes, they can be pigmented and the colours are super pretty but they just aren’t the sort of formula that I prefer in a lip liner.  I don’t like to have to really push a pencil with pressure across my lips to line them.  I just don’t.  I’m looking for a creamy formula that is matte and lasts well.  And that is just not what you get with these.  I tried them a couple of times but to be honest I just didn’t enjoy them, never reached for them and now I am decluttering them basically unused.

If you like a firmer, waxy lip liner then you may really enjoy these but if you are looking for something a bit creamer and smoother to apply then I recommend trying the Essence lip liners (which are cheaper and infinitely better!) or the ColourPop lip liners which also have a really nice formula (full review coming on the ColourPop liners!).

So that’s it!  Have a great day 🙂