Tartelette Tease Palette- A Review

“Why do we have this desire to tease the innocent? Is it envy?”- Graham Greene

Tarte tease palette

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Tarte Tartelette palette on dark skin NW45 swatch

From L-R, top to bottom: “whisper”, “crush”, “heartbreaker”, “wink”, “first kiss”, “BFF”

“Tease me tease me tease me tease me baby, till I lose control….” Aside from reminding me of this iconic Chaka Demus and Pliers tune from the halcyon days of my youth, Tarte have another winner on their hands with their Tartelette Tease palette.

The Tartelette Tease is a mini version of their Tartelette In Bloom palette, with just 6 shades in a palette about the size of a credit card. This is my second Tarte palette, after the original Tartelette palette, and I find the quality and performance of these shadows to be pretty consistent across all three “Tartelette” palettes.

The palette consists of 4 matte shades and 2 shimmers, and the layout is such that each row gives you a complete eye look. The mattes are buttery and pigmented but I find that they definitely need a primer underneath them. The staying power on my oily lids was disappointing without a primer but perfectly fine with my Urban Decay primer.

Of the two shimmery shades, one is of notably higher quality than the other. “Crush” can be a sparkly mess if not applied extremely carefully and I found that it worked best with a glitter glue. “First Kiss” is much less sparkly and thus didn’t give me any problem on application.

Whisper” and “wink,” the two lightest shades, appear a tad chalky in swatches but they can be easily sheered out for a good brow bone highlight on the eye. The best-performing shades were the two darkest shades- “heartbreaker” and “BFF.” These made great crease colours and I see them performing equally well in a smoky eye.

The price for what you get in the palette is a very affordable $21 (but bear in mind that each pan contains less product than the pans in the regular Tartelette palettes) and I think this is a great palette to take on the go.

If you are new to Tarte products, the brand claims to be natural, cruelty-free, and vegan-friendly. If these things are important to you and you’re looking for a portable makeup palette, I highly recommend giving the Tarlette Tease palette a look!

You can find the palette at Sephora, Ulta, Macy’s, and on the Tarte website. The palette is apparently limited edition so hurry if you want it!

Nana Adomah

 

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My MAC Lipstick Collection

I recently filmed a video of me swatching all of my MAC lipsticks. I honestly didn’t even realise I had so many until I started filming (thanks Back 2 MAC)! I always find these type of videos useful, especially when looking for what lipsticks actually look like on people. I plan to depot most of my lipsticks soon into a more convenient palette so I decided to film before the big event.

Most of these lipsticks were acquired from my local CCO and via MAC’s “Back 2 MAC” program. If you take any 6 empty MAC containers to a MAC store/ counter you can get a free lipstick (or eyeshadow in PRO stores).

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the video and let me know what your favourite MAC lipsticks are!

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.
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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

Are You A Living Legend?: MAC The Matte Lip Collection Review

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L-R: Living Legend, Fashion Revival

I’ve been super over a lot of MAC’s collections over the past few years and I swore I wouldn’t buy into the hype but here I am, the proud owner of two of the lipsticks in The Matte Lip collection. I ordered Fashion Revival and Living Legend and I couldn’t be more pleased.

There are eight lipsticks in the collection with Heroine being the only one that is part of the permanent collection. I already own Heroine and I have numerous reds so Fashion revival and living legend were the only ones that jumped out at me. I ordered these online but I’ll be sure to pop into the shops on Friday, when they are released in MAC stores, to see what the other colours are like in person.

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L-R: Living Legend, Fashion Revival indoors daytime w/ flash.

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Daytime swatch no flash

Living Legend is a fantastic deep aubergine colour that swatched with full opacity in just one swipe. I’ve been on my dark lipsticks a lot this year so this is a very welcome addition. Fashion Revival is a dark raspberry that’s also right up my street. I was scared it was just a more matte version of Rebel (my all-time favourite MAC lipstick) but happily it wasn’t too similar.

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L-R: Living Legend, Fashion Revival, and Rebel

Rebel is definitely more purple and generally darker overall.

Now be aware of the fact these lipsticks are in MAC’s matte formula and NOT in their retro matte formula like I originally believed. The formula is slightly more matte than their amplified lipsticks but not a true matte matte like Ruby Woo or Flat Out Fabulous.

All in all, this is a nice collection by MAC and I’m sure they’ll sell in their shed loads so be sure to check them out when they hit stores this Friday. Look out for a FOTD featuring these very soon!

The MAC Matte Lip collection can be purchased here or in stores on Friday for $16 (yes we see you constantly increasing your prices MAC smh) and I highly recommend them. There are also six pro longwear lip liners and three blushes that are part of the collection so be sure to give them a gander.

Nana Adomah

NARS Audacious Lipstick in “Lana” Review

I’ve been completely slacking on my social media game this summer so it came as a complete surprise to me when I was gifted one of the new lipsticks from NARS. I had no idea that there was a new line coming out but boy am I impressed.

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NARS audacious lipstick in “Lana”

 

The Audacious Lipstick Collection has been released in celebration of NARS’ 20th anniversary and there are 40 shades in all. Each lipstick is named after an iconic actress and I’m guessing that mine is named after Lana Turner. “Lana” is a bright orangey red and I still haven’t worn it out of the house but I’m determined to challenge myself. All my reds are blue-based reds so it’s nice to have a warm-toned one in my collection.

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New super-luxe packaging

The Audacious lipsticks are far removed from the plastic casing of the regular NARS lipstick line and these are made of a sleek, matte, black metal with a sexy magnetic closure. The NARS logo is embossed directly onto the bullet and it is also faintly etched onto the outer metal casing. Unfortunately, these lipsticks have also been hiked up in price to $32 compared to the usual $26 of the regular NARS lipstick line. $32 puts the lipsticks right next to the Givenchys, the YSLs, and the Diors of the cosmetic world and I’m sure that this may act as a deterrent for some. However, to be fair, NARS has at least tried to let you see where the extra money has gone.

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Fully pigmented in one stroke.

The lipstick has amazing pigment and you get full opacity in just one swipe. The best thing about it is that you barely feel as though you’re wearing anything at all since the formula is so lightweight. I have no idea how NARS managed to pack so much pigment into such a thin formula but I’m very impressed.

I would class these lipsticks as a “nice to have” rather than a “must have” so definitely go ahead and splurge only if you have the extra coins. These come in an impressive range of shades and they are a nice addition to the NARS line albeit at a very high price.

The NARS Audacious lipsticks can be found at Sephora or at NARS.

“I have a real love affair with lipstick. It gives you more power.” Francois Nars

Nana Adomah

It’s Electric!- Urban Decay Electric Palette Review

Urban Decay Electric Palette

FOMO (fear of missing out) is a real condition, I’m convinced. I snatched up this beauty about 3 weeks ago when I saw it on the shelves at Sephora and I’ve worn it almost everyday since. Yes the Naked palettes are nice and they have been stupendously successful for Urban Decay but I’m so glad that they’ve gone back to their roots with their new Electric palette. My very first quality eyeshadow palette was the original Deluxe Palette from Urban Decay about 7 years ago and I haven’t looked back since! Urban Decay were originally known for their crazy brights and bold pigments and they are back in full force with the Electric palette.

Urban Decay Electric Palette

Look at all of those glorious colours! I’m very impressed with this palette and the pigmentation is excellent. We are presented with 10 shades in the palette and they are:

revolt– a glittery silver, gonzo– a matte blue with a hint of turquoise, slowburn– an orange red matte with floating micro shimmer, savage– a hot pink matte, fringe– a metallic teal, chaos– a matte cobalt blue with floating micro shimmer (one of the standouts of the Vice palette), jilted– a slightly shimmery fuchsia with a blue shift, urban– a metallic medium purple, freak– a metallic neon green, and thrash– a chartreuse matte with floating micro shimmer (an exact dupe for NARS ‘rated R’).

Slowburnsavagejilted and urban stain the skin slightly and they required more effort to remove. Urban Decay included a little note about these colours in the box which indicates that they are not intended for the immediate eye area. As usual, people have kicked up a fuss about nothing and I’ve used all these colours with no ill effect so just use your own judgment is what I say. Here is the company’s official statement regarding this issue:

We created the Electric Pressed Pigment Palette with artistry in mind. Using pressed pigments was the only way for us to create heavily saturated brights with the intense pigment load we craved. Traditional eyeshadow formulas just wouldn’t cut it. To achieve shades like these, we started with our existing Eyeshadow formula and modified it to create a new Pressed Pigment formula.

Everywhere but the U.S., the Electric Palette is an eyeshadow palette. Because of a technicality, in the U.S. it’s considered a multi-use artistry palette. To get the most out of this palette, experiment and see what works for you. You can use the Electric Palette all over (and that’s where the creativity comes in!).

A few shades contain a colorant that has not yet been approved for the use around the immediate eye area. However, this restriction only applies in the U.S.; in every other country where Urban Decay is sold, these shades are approved for use around the eyes.

Bottom line? We didn’t want to limit the Electric Palette to eyeshadow. It’s an artistry palette with unlimited possibilities! How you use these shades is up to you. (And no matter where you use them, you’ll get insane color payout.)

So there you go.

Urban Decay electric palette dark skin swatch

The colours swatch easily on my skin, even the mattes which can tend to disappear on darker skin tones. I think the fact that most of the mattes have a slight floating micro-shimmer contribute to their creaminess. The micro particles don’t really show up on the skin but they do contribute to a happier blending experience. I own the original Vice palette and the chaos in this palette is better in my opinion. I have no idea if they reformulated the colour but I feel as though it’s slightly more pigmented here. Chaos is a beautiful colour but I do wish that they’d only had chaos OR gonzo. The palette has quite a few blueish shades and I think that gonzo is one blue too many. I wish they’d replaced it with a bright yellow and it would have been just about perfect. I was initially unsure about the purpose of revolt as well but I’ve seen a few people do some interesting things with the shade.

The palette also comes with a very decent double-ended brush and the smaller end works really well as a liner brush. Both ends have quite stiff bristles which is great for the nature of the eyeshadows as they lay down colour better.

The packaging is also a winner in my book as it’s non bulky and the case opens up to a large mirror. The hinge ensures that the mirror stays where you want it to and the magnetic closure is very secure.

Now on to how the colours look on my face!

Urban Decay Electric palette FOTD dark skin

“Urban” all over the lid, smoked out with a matte black shadow and “fringe” on my lower lash line. I also added Urban Decay’s moondust eyeshadow in “glitter rock” on the centre of my lid for some added sparkle. Lips: “Vento” lipstick (Bite Beauty) Foundation: Cover FX cream foundation in N100 Powder: Mineralize Skin Finish in “dark” and “dark deep” (MAC) Brows: Aqua Brow #30 (Make Up For Ever) Eye liner: “blacquer” liner (Marc Jacobs) Mascara: Diorshow New Look mascara in black (Dior)

Urban Decay FOTD ELECTRIC dark skin swatch

Are you as in love with the Electric palette as I am? If you’re undecided, the palette is a permanent addition so you have plenty of time to make up your mind. The palette retails for $49 and can be found at Sephora, Ulta, and on the Urban Decay website. Let me know your thoughts!

Nana Adomah

Brand Focus: Bite Beauty

Bite Beauty lipsticks

Bite Beauty is a brand I only came across last year and in this short time, they’ve yet to disappoint me. They make some of the most comfortable lipsticks I own. When I say “comfortable”, I mean you hardly feel as though you are wearing any lipstick at all when you have them on. They are very moisturizing and the pigment packed into each tiny bullet of lipstick is insane.

Bite Beauty is an all-natural company and each lip product is packed with all kinds of food-grade level goodness, hence the name Bite. The lipsticks are individually hand-crafted and they contain great ingredients like shea butter, manuka honey, argan oil, grapeseed oil, etc. The lipsticks also contain resveratrol, which “fights free radicals with potent long-term antiaging benefits”. Each Bite lipstick has the same amount of resveratrol  found in five glasses of red wine! Additionally, Bite Beauty products are free from parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, synthetic dyes, petrochemicals, phthalates and triclosan.

Bite Beauty lipstick bullets

My Bite lipstick collection isn’t huge but it’s well-loved. I have the luminous creme lipsticks in vento (a bubblegum pink), tannin (a burgundy), and the limited edition VIB Rouge mini lipstick made for Sephora VIB Rouge card holders. I also recently purchased the two luminous creme lipstick duos in neutral and vivid. The neutral comes with lychee (a very light neutral pink) and musk (a pinky brown), while the vivid comes with palomino (a vibrant magenta) and violet (a pinkish purple). I also have a mini of the cashmere lipstick cream in sancerre (a bright fuschia with red undertones).

From top-bottom: musk, lychee, violet, palomino

From top-bottom: musk, lychee, violet, palomino

The mini duos are a great way to try out the Bite lipsticks in a cute and portable package. As you can see from the swatches, the pigmentation’s insane and they just feel so nice on the lips. They are a great price at $12 each and since each regular-sized Bite lipstick is $24, you can try out two colours for half the price of one! Continue reading

NARS eye paint in “Snake Eyes”

Let’s just ignore the fact that I haven’t blogged in 2 months and dive right into the review….

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NARS has long been one of my favorite brands (especially for blusher) and I was really excited to try one of their new-ish eye paints. These can be used as either a liner or a shadow and I was immediately drawn to beautiful colour of “snake eyes”. It’s a blackened green that glides on beautifully when used as a liner but also blends well for a cream eyeshadow.

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In natural light

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With flash

It dries down very quickly so you definitely have to work quickly with it. It also has excellent staying power and the following picture is of my (generally oily) eyelid after almost 12 hours of wear.

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After 12hrs+ of wear….

The bottom line:

  • This is a great versatile eye product and the colour is unique enough to add to your collection.
  • Great staying power.

This comes in 9 other colours and you can find it at NARS counters or at Sephora for $25

I’ll rate this 4.5/5!

Nana Adomah