MAC The Matte Lip Collection- Part 2!

‘That always seemed so ridiculous to me, that people want to be around someone because they’re pretty. It’s like picking your breakfast cereals based on colour instead of taste.’ – John Green
MAC antique velvet lipstick dark skin

MAC whirl lipstick dark skin

MAC men love mystery lipstick dark skin

MAC men love mystery, antique velvet, whirl swatch on dark skin nw45 woc

L-R: Men Love Mystery, Antique Velvet, Whirl outdoor swatches in direct sunlight

MAC men love mystery, antique velvet, whirl swatch on dark skin nw45 woc black woman

L-R: Men Love Mystery, Antique Velvet, Whirl indoor swatches

mac antique velvet lipstick on dark skin nw45 woc swatch

Antique Velvet

MAC whirl lipstick on dark skin nw45 woc swatch

Whirl

MAC men love mystery on dark skin nw45 woc swatch

Men Love Mystery

As usual, MAC have gone into overdrive with their seemingly endless “limited edition” collections this year but The Matte Lip Collection is very welcome and best of all- permanent! Most of the lipsticks released in last year’s matte lip collection were limited edition so this is a very welcome change. I already own “Flat Out Fabulous”, “Ruby Woo”, and “Heroine” from the collection so I tried to be good and I limited myself to just three. I decided on “Men Love Mystery” (a pinkish violet), “Antique Velvet” (a reddish chocolate brown), and “Whirl” (a lipstick version of the best-selling pinkish brown lipliner).

I was so excited to finally get these in the post that I had to throw up some quick swatches on my lips. These are all without any sort of liner so you can see the true shade of the lipsticks. “Men Love Mystery” will definitely need a liner when I wear it out of the house and I’m thinking that “Whirl” will also benefit from one even though it’s not strictly necessary. “Antique Velvet” looks darker on me in person and I’m looking forward to rocking it in the Autumn/ Winter.

The three lipsticks I ordered are of the “matte” formula rather that the “retro-matte” formula so they are nowhere near as drying as Ruby Woo et. al. They feel comfortable on the lips but make sure your lips are nice and smooth before rocking them. I’m sure a few of these shades (“Whirl” in particular) will sell out but these are permanent so take your time if you’re willing to be patient.

MAC’s The Matte Lip collection can be found online now and in stores in a few weeks’ time. There are a whopping 22 shades and they retail for $16.

Are you planning on getting anything from this collection? Let me know in the comments!

Nana Adomah

Edited to add: Here’s a quick FOTD with me wearing “Whirl” today with “Chestnut” lipliner. Excuse the deer caught in headlights look. I can’t seem to take a good selfie these days 😦

MAC Whirl lipstick on dark skin NW45 WOC

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Face Of The Day: Shades Of Orange

“I wish I could show you when you are lonely or in darkness the astonishing light of your own being” – Hafiz of Shiraz
NARS persia fotd dark skin woc nw45 NARS persia on dark skin nw45 fotd swatch NARS Taj mahal Persia on dark skin woc nw45

I often used NARS Persia eyeshadow as a transition shade but I’ve never made it the focus of an eye look before. This Memorial Day weekend is blessing us with glorious weather and I decided to do a quick orange eye just because. I even wore lashes! This was a super simple look and it wore perfectly for the whole afternoon. Click below for a list of products used. Continue reading

Colourpop Highlighters: A Review

“The more you leave out, the more you highlight what you leave in.” – Henry Green

Colourpop highlighters

Colourpop highlighters on dark skin

From L-R: “Sticky Sweet”, “Tasty”, “Avalon”, “Monster”

colourpop sticky sweet and avalon highlighters on dark skin

“Avalon” & “Sticky Sweet” Top- indoor swatch w/ flash , Bottom- outdoor swatch

Colourpop tasty monster highlighters on dark skin swatch

“Monster” & “Tasty”: Top- indoor swatch w/ flash, Bottom- outdoor swatch

Colourpop cosmetics tasty blush highlight on dark skin nw45

“Tasty” layered over NARS “Liberte”

I was a complete saddo and stalked the Colourpop website in anticipation of their new highlighters. Highlighters are in my top 3 makeup items of all time so these were a no-brainer. I restrained myself however, and I only bought 4: “Monster”, “Tasty”, “Avalon”, and “Sticky Sweet”. 

Colourpop’s newest additions are similar in texture to their amazing shadows in that they’re not quite cream but rather more putty-like in texture. Pictures truly do not do these justice as they appear much more shiny and pigmented in living colour.

The colours are described by Colourpop as follows:

“Monster”light pink with [a] highly opalescent duo chrome finish

“Tasty”candy coloured coral with multi-dimensional pink and copper duo chrome finish

“Avalon”a true golden bronze with golden pink duo chrome finish

“Sticky Sweet”a deep violet with pink duo chrome finish

All the shades (aside from “monster”) can be worn as a blush when built up or applied as a sheer wash of colour for a highlighted effect. “monster” and “Avalon” apply as true highlighters on me whilst “sticky sweet” and “tasty” straddle the line between a blush and highlighter. “Avalon” reminds me a lot of BECCA’s “blushed copper” but I do not own any colours like the other shades.

All 4 colours are beautiful but “monster” was the real surprise. It looks scary and pasty in the pan but it really comes alive when swatched on the skin. It’s like a cool/ pink- toned version of NARS’s “Albatross”.

“Monster” (and another shadow I ordered) came to me damaged as the product had separated itself from its container but Colourpop’s customer service was fantastic and they mailed me another one about a week later.

If you are familiar with Colourpop, these provide the same high quality as their other products and if you’re not, well what are you waiting for?! These babies are only $8 a piece and they are worth far, far more in my opinion.

Colourpop are currently offering a free eyeshadow with any purchase (while supplies last) and there are a few free shipping codes floating around too.

Have you tried any of these new highlighters? Let me know in the comments!

Nana Adomah

Cover FX Custom Cover Drops: A Review

“One drop of wine is enough to redden a whole glass of water.” – Victor Hugo

Cover FX custom cover drops n100 n110

Cover FX custom cover drops

cover fx custom cover drops on dark skin n110

Cover FX custom Cover Drops on dark skin N100 N110

Wearing the CCDs in N110 mixed with Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue and concealer. No powder or blush.

Once in a blue moon you come across a makeup product that is life-changing in the true meaning of the word; a product that is so ingenious you wonder why nobody thought of that before. Enter Cover FX’s Custom Cover Drops. I’ve waxed poetic about my love for this brand before but this has to be far and away my favourite thing the brand has brought out.

Custom Cover Drops (CCDs) are drops of pure pigment that allow you to fully customize any of your liquid-based beauty products. They can be mixed with facial oils, primers, moisturisers, serums, other foundations, and the list goes on and on. If it’s liquid, mix away!

Cover FX suggests adding 1 drop for sheer coverage, 2 drops for medium coverage, 3 drops for full coverage, and 4 drops for total coverage. I don’t think I’ve ever tested a product as thoroughly as I have this one. I’m typically N100 in Cover FX products but I purchased N110 in the drops as I primarily got it to mix with all my foundations that are far too light for me. I shudder to think how they would still be languishing in my foundation graveyard if these drops hadn’t come into my life. For example, I’ve tried the drops with argan oil (give a gorgeous dewy glow), with Caudalie’s mattifying moisturizer, with Bare Minerals’ Complexion Rescue (finally gives me the coverage I crave) and with my fave- Murad’s Invisiblur. There hasn’t been a single product the CCDs haven’t meshed well with. I’ve finally been able to wear my YSL fusion ink foundation because of the CCDs and I feel like I have so much more versatility in my face makeup. No longer will  I have to have a “Summer shade” and a “Winter shade” for my foundations and I’m planning on getting the drops in N90 for my foundations that are too dark for me. The CCDs gives my skin a gorgeous and flawless but natural finish and I couldn’t be more pleased with them.

Like all other Cover FX products, the CCDs are fragrance, paraben, gluten, and mineral oil free so don’t worry about them negatively affecting your skin. I’ve had the drops since the day they came out and I would happily pay more than their $44 price tag.

My one and only complaint about them is that the opening of the bottle needs to be much smaller as leaks can occur if you don’t make sure it’s tightly sealed before shaking the bottle. My bottle looks a mess right now because the leaks have accumulated around the opening. I would also love it if Cover FX would come out with a resealable mixing palette so I don’t have to waste the product left over when I mix up my concoctions.

However, that’s a minor quibble and I would run, not walk, to snatch this up. Cover FX have always been great at giving us a wide range of colours for all undertones so I’m sure there’ll be a colour to suit your needs.

The Cover Fx Custom Cover Drops are available at Cover FX and at Sephora for $44.

Are you intrigued by this product? Let me know in the comments below!

Nana Adomah

“L.U.V Conquers All”: Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick Review

“True love is usually the most inconvenient kind”- Kiera Cass

Kat Von D LUV

Kat Von D LUV on dark skinKat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in “L.U.V” is my third purchase in this line and it’s far and away my favourite. “L.U.V” is a purple/ pink that goes on wet like a lipgloss but dries to a matte finish that does not budge. I’d been putting off getting this shade for a while as I needed another purple/ pink lip product like a hole in the head but I’m so glad I finally caved.

I can put “L.U.V” on in the morning and (if I avoid greasy foods) forget up touching up for the majority of the day. Yes, it can feel a touch drying as most liquid lipsticks are wont to do but it is most definitely bearable. Making sure your lips are exfoliated and lightly moisturised before application will also go a long way towards combatting dryness. It feels pretty lightweight on the lips and it doesn’t collect in the corners of my mouth either. It can also be worn without a lipliner if desired but I am wearing it with OCC’s “Hoochie” liner in the pictures above.

“L.U.V” is a great colour for this time of year and I heartily recommend it to all my lipstick lovers out there. Check out this and the other colours in the range for $20 at Sephora.

Are you in love with “L.U.V”? Let me know in the comments!

Nana Adomah

MAC See Sheer Lipstick: Swatches and FOTD

“Beauty is excrescence, superabundance, random ebullience, and sheer delightful waste to be enjoyed in its own right.” – Donald Culross PeattieMAC See Sheer lipstick

MAC see sheer on dark skin swatch

MAC See Sheer on dark skin NW45 swatchI’ve had my eye on MAC’s “See Sheer” lipstick for years. I fell in love with it back when I lived in London but I could never remember the name of it when it came time to purchase for some reason. I was looking for a lipstick as my free “Back to MAC” choice a little while ago when I re-discovered this lovely orangey coral shade.

“See Sheer” is the perfect no-fuss Spring/ Summer shade and the best thing is that I don’t need a liner to rock it! It’s part of MAC’s “luster” formulas and it has a decent amount of slip. It’s semi-sheer but you can easily build it up to a fuller coverage. It wears very well but it can settle into cracks and lines in the lips after a few hours.

“See Sheer” is one of those colours that I think will look good on everybody. It’s sheer enough to suit numerous skin tones but still gives good colour pay-off.

You can grab it at any MAC counter or online at MAC for $16 (when did MAC lipsticks hit $16? SMDH).

Have a wonderful weekend everybody!

Nana Adomah

NARS Dual-Intensity Blush in “Panic”: A Review

“I’m not panicking. I’m watching you panic. It’s more entertaining.”- Lois McMaster Bujold

NARS panic blush dual-intensity

NARS blushI told myself that I would skip this offering from NARS when it was released. However, when I played with them in the store, “Panic” just had to be mine.

Following on from their fantastic dual-intensity eyeshadows, NARS have blessed us with dual-intensity blushes which can be used both wet and dry for full-on or lighter coverage. “Panic” is described as a “shimmering shocking fuchsia/ shimmering orange-pink” and I found that to be accurate.

NARS dual-intensity blush on dark skin dry

Blush swatched dry and blended out. Top- indoor swatch, Bottom- outdoor swatch.

NARS dual-intensity blush panic on dark skin wet

Top: panic swatched wet indoors, Bottom: panic swatched wet outdoors.

The texture of the dual-intensity blushes are very different from the regular line of NARS blushes and they have more of a radiant finish than the matte or shimmer found in the regular line. The blush isn’t soft or powdery and you do have to be a bit more vigorous with the brush action than usual.

The packaging is the usual NARS rubberized plastic and it opens and closes very easily with a magnetic clasp. Inside there is a large mirror and the two shade of blush that can either be worn separately or blended together.

I’ve worn Panic both wet and dry and I much prefer the dry application. It’s too finicky for me wet and I feel as though it’s difficult to get a consistent application. It does blend very easily though and it’s relatively easy to switch from a sheer to full coverage when used dry. It’s perfect for those who want  luminous sheen from their blushes.

Panic is a very pretty blush but I wouldn’t recommend the dual-intensity blushes over NARS’ fantastic regular blushes. Additionally, they are FAR more expensive at $45 each.

Grab one of these if you like a more radiant finish to your blushes and don’t mind paying $45 (!) but in my opinion, there are better options out there. I’d recommend sticking to the regular NARS blushes as they’ve never ever steered me wrong.

The NARS dual-intensity blushes can be found at NARS or any usual NARS stockists. I found mine on eBay and I’d give it a gander for some bargains.

Nana Adomah

A Tale Of Two Highlighters: BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector Poured & Pressed Review

“All that glisters is not gold; often you have heard that told.” – William Shakespeare
IMG_2119

BECCA shimmering skin perfector poured

Yet another BECCA review today! I was so excited when I heard that BECCA was coming out with a cream version of their best-selling Shimmering Skin Perfectors (SSP). I already have topaz in their pressed version and I often mix the liquid version of their SSP with my foundation for some extra glow. So when the “poured” (cream) version of the SSP came out, I snapped up topaz without a thought.

However, I have to say that the “poured” version of topaz is the first BECCA product I’ve been disappointed in. I expected the poured topaz to be much more pigmented on my skin than it actually is- a cream version of the pressed topaz if you will. However, this is far more in line with the liquid version of their SSP as in it’s very sheer. This will be perfect for somebody who just wants a light and subtle highlight but that’s not what I’m looking for at $38. Highlighters are my favourite face products and I looooooove me a blinging glow. This just didn’t deliver for me personally.

On to the product itself: poured topaz comes in smaller packaging than the pressed SSP and it’s the same size as BECCA’s blushes. The colour in the pan initially looks very dark but it’s the same colour as the other versions of topaz when swatched. The cream is neither too wet or too dry and it blends very easily. It looks beautiful before blending but disappointment quickly sets in when you do so.

Topaz poured on dark skin

Poured topaz swatched and blended. Not very blingarific 😦

I took some comparison shots of topaz poured and topaz pressed and there’s just no contest. The pressed version just melts into the skin and blends beautifully. A little bit goes a long way and it just gives the most gorgeous golden glow. It’s my all-time favourite highlighter and I wear it almost every day. The dark gold colour looks stunning on dark skin and I don’t have a single criticism about this product (wish it was cheaper though!).

Becca topaz highlighters

BECCA shimmering skin perfector in topaz- pressed and poured.

BECCA topaz poured pressed on dark skin swatch

L-R: poured swatch, pressed swatch

BECCA topaz shimmering skin perfector on dark skin

L-R: poured swatch and pressed swatch blended out

So if you’re looking to nab yourself one of BECCA’s highlighter, I’d highly recommend any of the pressed versions. They come in 6 different shades and there’s one to suit every skin tone. If you’re looking for a cream highlight however, I’d give these a miss and check out the offerings from Cover FX or Benefit instead.

The BECCA shimmering perfectors can be found at Ulta or Sephora (poured is exclusive to Sephora) for $38. It’s pricy, but the pressed is worth every single penny and it will last you forever.

Has a trusted brand ever failed you? Let me know in the comments!

Nana Adomah

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette- A Review

“May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.” – J.R.R. TolkienIMG_0970I ummed and aahed over this palette when it was first released two Christmases ago and I kicked myself when it sold out before I could buy it. Hourglass then re-released it and I decided that I really didn’t need to spend $60 on makeup I didn’t necessarily need. However, I snapped it up when a 30% off discount code was made available to me. Bargains for the win!

Hourglass ambient lighting palette on dark ksin

From L-R: Dim Light, Incandescent Light, Radiant Light

Hourglass’s ambient lighting powders are legendary in the beauty world and I love to use them when I do makeup for other people. They are quite pricy so you typically wouldn’t buy several shades at once but you get three (smaller sizes) in the ambient lighting palette. I don’t think that most of the shades are friendly towards very dark skin tones but happily, this palette includes the one shade that I think is perfect for us- radiant light. The palette consists of dim light (a peachy beige shade), radiant light (a light gold shade), and an exclusive shade- incandescent light (a silvery pearl shade).

Carisa Janes originally created the ambient lighting powders to recreate the look of skin under soft lighting and these powders definitely do the job. They are very soft without being powdery and they almost melt into the skin. They can be used as a general setting powder or as a highlighting powder depending on your preferences. Dim Light is the best for all-over setting purposes whilst radiant light and incandescent light would work better as highlighters in my opinion. However, the shimmer in both of these powder aren’t prohibitively glittery so I think you could definitely get away with an all-over application.
IMG_0967

My pictures (taken over a year ago eek!) were taken in bright sunlight so be aware that the powders are slightly darker in person. The palette is free from fragrance, parabens, talc, gluten and is also vegan-friendly.

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting palette can be purchased at Hourglass or Sephora for $58.

Have you tried any of the legendary ambient lighting powders from Hourglass? Let me know in the comments!

Nana Adomah

Blushing All Over: BECCA Blushed Copper Review

“Man is the only animal that blushes. Or needs to.” – Mark TwainBECCA blushed copper packagingBECCA have added another fantastic addition to their wonderful line of pressed shimmering skin perfectors (SSP). The newest, limited-edition shade is Blushed Copper and it’s everything I’ve come to expect from BECCA. I can’t believe that this is my first blog post on a BECCA product since they’re one of my favourite brands and this is my second pressed highlighter from them after  my all-time favourite “Topaz”.

BECCA blushed copper

Textured surface

BECCA SSP blushed copper

Blushed Copper is embossed with the same pattern as their “Rose Gold” pressed SSP and I hope that this will become part of their permanent line as Rose Gold eventually did. It’s the same size as all the other BECCA pressed SSP however, the packaging is a silver and copper rather than BECCA’s usual silver and brown. The colour of Blushed Copper actually pulls a true rose gold on my dark skin and it’s a shade that I think will work better for women with darker-toned skin. It straddles the line between a highlighter and a blush and it can easily be worn as both. It looks great by itself or lightly dusted on top of a similar-toned blush.

Indoor swatch swiped once and blended out.

Indoor swatch swiped once and blended out.

Pictures really don’t do this product justice as it’s beautifully shimmery in real life. I’ve never seen a highlighter like this as it has true pinkish gold shimmer as opposed to the gold or silver found in other highlighters. The texture is ridiculously buttery and it almost feels like a cream rather than a powder. A tiny amount is all that’s needed for a gorgeous Summer glow and I received so many compliments when I wore this. I love the colour so much that I plan on trying this out as an eyeshadow in the future too.

BECCA blushed copper on dark skin

This is a definite must-have in my opinion. More so if you have darker skin and are a fan of highlighters. It’s not a colour I would wear everyday but I know I’ll be rocking it every time I rock any look in the pink/ rose family. It’s a truly stunning shade and let’s all keep our fingers crossed that BECCA make this permanent.

BECCA’s “Blushed Copper” shimmering skin perfector pressed is limited edition and is sadly not available in stores but it can be found online at Sephora for $38.

Are you guys as obsessed with BECCA as I am? Let me know in the comments!

Nana Adomah