My Ideal Lip Collection

My ideal lip collection looks something like this:

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  • Life’s Entropy Catalyst (perfect nude)
  • Life’s Entropy Biohazard (awesome pinky red with green shimmer – wearable daily but also weird.)
  • Sheer/clear gloss, doesn’t matter which brand tbh. The one I put here is from Catrice.
  • Revlon Matte Balm Shameless (MOST PERFECT PAHRPUL)
  • Maybelline Vivids Neon Red (warm red)
  • Revlon Icy Violet (SHIMMERY PAHRPUL that can almost pass off as a nude)
  • Maybelline Creamy Mattes Touch of Spice (It screams I-AM-A-SERIOUS-ADULT for when I can’t)
  • Buxom Hooligan (My lips but WAY FUCKING BETTER)
  • Estee Lauder Pure Colour Lipstick Tiger’s Eye (GLITTERY BRONZE RED DAZZLES)
  • 4x Mentholatum Watercolour Sugar balm (the other 2 in the range has glitter, which I’m not that fond of.)
  • Guerlain Rouge G Gigolo (because I only need 1 dark, dark colour)
  • Kiko Metallic Lipstick in Fuchsia (because everyone needs a lipstick that screams HOT FUCKING METALLIC PINK)

To this, I would add:

  • NARS Velvet Matte Pencil Dragon Girl (bought, loved, lost, bought, loved, lost, yet to buy pencil no. 3 just in case I lose it)
  • Besame Red Velvet (never actually tried, but all reviews are raving and it’s DAT PEGGY CARTER LIPSTICK and I don’t have a darker red so HEY WHY NOT!)****

Of course, reality is sadly not the case, and I have loads of other lipsticks that I will be panning/destashing etc.

The total is 17, and that’s counting the 4 Mentholatums I have which are basically tinted balms that I rarely wear alone, and use most often to refresh my lipstick colour while providing much needed balminess. That is an amazingly low number of lipsticks, which means I can add more, amirite? 😀

 

**** I just found that beautybay.com [nonaffiliate] stocks BESAME!! AND THEY HAVE RED VELVET!!!!! And they have something else I like (Zoeva Rose Golden Blush palette!!!!!!!!) Going to place a very carefully considered order soon!!

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Weekly Make up Basket W17

This week I picked a quad! This is the Sonia Rykiel quad in 09. True to its Japanese origins, it doesn’t have any kind of nice name 😛

There is a frosty ice blue, a very Japanese, refined version of the infamous bluebrown kind of shadow, a slate grey and a warm chocolate brown. They are very, very silky, but not very pigmented. All of them are mega shimmery, so I picked Girl Crush to be my crease shade.. The overall look is leaning cool, mega shimmery but not very colourful look, which is perfectly fine by me.

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I picked Ellis Faas L406 to be my lips shade, mainly because I clicked out WAY too much and now I have a blob to use :S I think I do like this after all, kind of. Wouldn’t repurchase though.

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Side note: NYX cream blush Natural (2nd swatch from right) is SO GORGEOUS AMIRITE. It’s SUCH a gorgeous shade of pale pretty pink.

 

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The first day I think the super sparkly smokey-ish eyes and reddish lip was a bit overkill. I definitely had to tone it down the next few days.

Overall though I’m really liking the Japanese eyeshadows! So silky, smooth, and they blend themselves.

My fun budget for the rest of 2016

I’ve had some major life changes, and there are quite a lot of things that are quite stressful emotionally and somewhat financially (not my personal finances, but a close family member’s.) The good thing is that I got a new full time job, after not working for the past 2 years, so at least I have stable income. I also have a small business designing engagement rings, which bring in a decent bit of bonus income so I’m going to keep at it so long as there’s someone who’s interested.

So here are a few realizations for me… My job pays $2600 (in my currency, relatively standard or even on the high side for entry level jobs in our country.) 20% is a government mandated pension contribution (like if 401ks were mandatory.) The amount I take home a month is $2080. I also teach mathematics to this boy, which nets me $240 a month. So $2320 total.

A normal work day is 9 hours spent at the office (8 + 1 lunch hour). Assuming there are 22 work days a month, that is 198 total hours in the office, which gives an hourly rate of $13.13. That is very low, as you know. Even with my cheapo habit of buying destashed make up off others, it’s gone in like 2 drugstore lipsticks, 1 drugstore foundation, maaaaaybe a mid end lipstick if you can get a good deal. Unless you’re making significantly more than I am, I highly suggest you calculate your hourly rate. You will then ask yourself: Is a new blush/impulse buy worth X more hour of my life at my office?

I am also buying a very small 0.5% share in my uncle business as an investment, as I have mentioned before. That amounts to $50,000. With some prior savings, gifts and some windfalls, I have scrimped up $28,250. My goal for this year is to scrounge up the remaining $21,750.

Because I’m working with a very limited income pool, I have decided to save $2100 a month. Most of my other costs for existing is covered by my parents, so I only have a few basic obligations a month. I have an agreement with them to streamline all the various expenses and make everything more efficient, such as by maximizing credit card rewards, so I guess that will kind of cover my cost. After all of that, I have a ‘fun’ budget of $80 a month, which is the remaining. That includes any food or drink consumed outside and anything strictly unnecessary that I buy, which of course includes make up. Anything I destash (clothes, books, make up etc) will increase my fun budget. (FYI, I bring lunch to the office every day, rain or shine, tasty or not. I treat weekday lunches as simply a joyless act to fill the stomach.)

Thanks to my changes in life and my self imposed shoestring budget, I have not bought anything since January, except when I was in the US and bought 1 lipstick and kept my spending low even though I was on holiday. My last purchase was the the Maybelline Touch of Spice during the US trip. All my purchases will eat into the $80 budget, whether it’s a replacement, or new shiny things, so I have to think very hard about whether I want that new shiny thing, or I want to replace something. Or indeed, whether I treat myself to the luxury of outside food once a week.

In this way, make up is no longer something I obsess over, or even a priority in my life. It is right where it should be, a luxury that I have of actually applying crap on my face just to look better. It has also changed my panning habits. I’ve realized that if you pan something that you regularly use or will be repurchasing, it’s just increasing your costs. The main thing is NOT to impulse buy stuff, and you will not have a problem with desperately trying to pan stuff. If I panned all my existing moisturizers I would have to buy a new one, but do I even have the budget to get a new moisturizer? So I’m just going to use them at my existing rate, no funny methods to increase usage, and focus on never increasing my stash further.

I’ve also done LOADS of destashing, since it adds to my fun budget. I destashed all foundations other than Lasting Sil, even the ones I liked (since it appears I take 2 years to finish 1 oz of foundation…) I also found strength to cull my already tiny highlighter collection: from 3 full sized products (+ 2 teeny samples I’m halfway through) to just 2, 1 ‘natural’ colour highlight (ie champagne) and 1 weird highlight (CP Monster.) I really had a soft spot for Mary Lou-manizer, but I had less and less justification to keep it around. I’m mailing it out today, sobs.

Another way to still try out interesting new make up products while being on a super strict budget like me is to do trades. Recently I traded a palette for some non-make up stuff (a new basic bra that was the wrong size for OP but right for me, and a black slip – boring as f, right?) AND a couple of nail polishes. If people want to trade, I’m more than happy to swap my items for a chance to try out interesting goodies – at just the price of postage.

Now, I still have way too many lipsticks and eyeshadows (hard to sell them, le sigh) but at least I’m most definitely not buying anymore, which is far better than what I could say last year.

If anyone is interested in a super frugal lifestyle, you can visit www.mrmoneymustache.com which was the site which spurred me onto frugality. I discovered it around 2 years ago and I immediately made changes in my life, although I was still a work in progress until now. I know make up is kind of an antithesis to his super minimalism, but I’ve always told myself that I have no hobbies that require money except make up. And you can be super creative with very basic and cheap make up, instead of always indulging in new releases or high end things.

Sorry for the extremely long post. A $80 (around $60 USD) total fun budget (eating out, movies, any purchases at all) is difficult for me to accept but I’m trying to tell myself I’m doing a good thing and look at my long term goal, which is to make a good investment, rather than frittering it away.

Not makeup: Super quick and easy budget meal

Pasta is my favourite brainless, throw-anything-you-have-in-the-pot meal. This week I am going through some big transitions, so I don’t have someone cooking for me, but I still want to pack lunch to work, and if I have enough food, eat some dinner at home. I know this is not make up related but I’m always very excited about my frugal ways.

1 can tomato puree $1.43

1 can diced tomatoes $2.45

400g pasta shells $1.50 (whole pack, which I don’t think I will finish in 4 meals.)

Celery $0.40 (used 4 sticks, around 1/5 or less of the whole bunch.)

Onion and garlic $0.10 (use as much or as little as you like.)

Oyster mushroom $0.50

Herbs, etc as you see fit, salt. $0.10

 

About $5.68 (my local currency) for 4 (or more!) meals. I’m pretty sure the spaghetti sauce is enough to last me for a gooooood long while. If there is enough I’ll also have a couple of dinners. This makes a SUPER chunky sauce, because there is a lot of celery (plus the mushrooms.) Reduce or skip either if you’re not a fan (I am!)

You can buy pasta sauce at the supermarket, but it’s significantly more expensive ($5+ for around slightly more than 1 can of tomatoes.) I like making my own, it has to simmer for awhile but that’s why I’m typing this blog post, right?

What I do is make a huge pot of spaghetti sauce and put it in the fridge. In the morning, I cook up my pasta shells (or any spaghetti, really) in a pot of boiling water while I potter around making and having my breakfast (the last of my soft fajita wraps from USA, usually with an egg.) When I’m done with breakfast, the pasta is done as well, so I just drain it and chuck it into a container with sufficient pasta sauce and bring the container to work. I do my make up after breakfast, and thanks to my weekly makeup basket, my routine is pretty fast, and I’m done in about 15 minutes, and that’s only if I faff around with my eyelash curler and mascara.

The beauty of the pasta sauce is that it’s very adaptable. Want some meat? I would throw some minced beef to boil with the morning pasta. Seafood? I have some frozen shrimp that I would boil with the pasta too. If not, I have a pack of ham that can be sliced up and tossed into the mix. Egg? Fry one up in the morning (along with my breakfast.)

It’s nice to know that I can still be independent when I want to be!

Wet n Wild I Got Good Jeans, Duped!

I saw Wet n Wild’s I Got Good Jeans trio and was SO inspired! I’m a sucker for blue denim shades (even though I never wear blue eyeshadow… go figure) and matching with the gold is just…. Whoo!!! 🙂

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Plus, I saw this editorial photo:

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I have no idea if the look was done using IGGJ or not, but the colour scheme is identical. And it looks GORGEOUS.

I pulled out shadows I had that looked similar and found these. Don’t ask me what palette they come from, I don’t know. I suspect the bottom one is from Sleek’s Bad Girl, but the pale blue I have no idea (perhaps Celestial). The gold cube is from a Body Shop baked cubes quad that is ancient, but it’s just the right kind of gold that is very yellow, for this quad.

On the right are the swatches. The pale blue isn’t too pigmented, which is fine by me because shimmery powder blue is SO 1980s. My jeans blue isn’t the greatest quality, it’s slightly patchy and turns a weird slightly greenish colour on me, but it’s fine since I only use it for accents. The gold is smooth and relatively pigmented.

I went for a different placement because I tried dark blue in the crease and it most certainly did NOT work. So I just kept the dark blue in the inner and outer corners as a slight accent. I also didn’t like the SHIMMA ALL OVAR look, so I used a matte taupe in the crease.

(Click to enlarge!)

I find that the cool blue also pairs really well with warm brown eyeliner, so a teeny bit of warm brown gel liner in my outer corner there goes. I really need definition around my lashline, idk why but my lashline is like super un dark.

Full face (wearing very minimal other make up, mainly just brows and powder that melted off in the extreme heat of today :P)

The overall look is actually really good! I really like it, and it’s a bit too involved for daily wear to the office, but it’s definitely a wearable, yet colourful result. It’s a definite blue eyeshadow look, without being I AM WEARING BLUE EYESHADOW Y’ALL. Maybe on Fridays?

 

So instead of spending money on yet another set of eyeshadows, challenge yourself to dupe a look with your existing shadows! And find very fun placements in the process 🙂

Minimint Palette experience and review.

I purchased a Minimint custom palette here!

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Man, SO PRETTY.

This was one of the very few items I bought during my US trip. If you look through Jenny’s Etsy shop, you will realize that she does custom magnetic palettes, a la Z palettes. Z palettes are boring though and come in very standard sizes and colourways (not to mention fairly expensive for being just bits of cardboard and plastic!!!), but Jenny will satisfy the indie, customizing freak in you.

Jenny offers special sizes: a 3×3 mini palette, 4×4 mint palette, and 6×4 minimint palette. The usable sizes are a little smaller (due to the border) but she offers you exact dimensions. Since I don’t use MAC shadows, and my main shadows are Sleek
(which are very tiny, approx 20.5cm pans), I had to measure it myself to figure what would fit and what wouldn’t, but I’m glad all the information is widely available.

The beauty of Minimint is that each palette is completely unique to you. Jenny has a whole bunch of patterns/papers and she never reuses them. What’s more, there is so much attention to detail. All the corners are very carefully cut, and even the interior is carefully matched to the exterior!!!! As you can see, the foamboard interior is also very nicely cut. The magnet holding the cover together is pretty damn strong, and the base magnet for palettes is of fair strength too.

Prices are very, very fair, I feel, for a handmade, unique product of great quality. It’s like $5 USD for the smallest size, $7 for Mint and $10 or something for the storage, excluding shipping.

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My complete package was super complete:

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It came with lots of bubble wrap, a business card, round stickers for labelling pans (you really didn’t need to!) and even a sample! I mean, I just bought a palette for literally a few US dollars, and you give me so much free shit? THANK YOU.

By the way, if you recall, I also used her guide on how to magnetize your make up pans for almost NO COST here. I swear she is as cheapo as I am!!! Warning, it IS a bit more labour intensive.

For reference here is what I could fit into my 4×4 palette:

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If I put nothing but Sleek shadows, I can put 4 per row x 5 rows, for 20 shadows.

Because my face powder and my NYX taupe is SUCH a weirdo size and shape, I end up only managing to squeeze 6 shadows. If you don’t need to put face powder, it’ll be much easier.

I would also like a mirror sheet in this palette (since the point of a small palette is to bring it around.) I did ask Jenny if she could do it but she told me she couldn’t and instead referred me to another palette maker who could! So helpful of her 🙂

Overall, my experience was absolutely amazing and I would not hesitate to order from her again. Except you know for my low buy and everything. Do support her!!!

Weekly Make up Basket W15 2016

This is the first week I am back at my mum’s place, also the place where I grew up. I live a super transient lifestyle, I’ve shifted house every year for the past 2-3 years 😦 I also don’t foresee myself staying here for too long, if this house sells (and we are hoping it sells soon) we will be moving to the other house we own, and if I manage to buy a house of my own (which I am trying to) we will be moving there in 2018 or so… you get the idea.

So, my make up this week is kept as simple as possible. Also because it’s getting real hot. I used a pink as a base shade on my lids, topped with some copper and gold shimmer. The overall effect is very peachy and summery. I’m also going to use a liquid liner that is very warm, since my whole vibe is a very summery vibe.

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Pink + orange + gold = peach? 😀 Minty green is for my Friday look because I LIVE FOR MINT GREEN WITH GOLD.

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Since I actually sold my rose gold blush, I’m using a bad coral lipstick (Revlon Audacious) for a nice summer flush. It’s very pigmented and it looks gorgeous on the cheeks but it’s disgusting on the lips.

I’m going to skip the face contouring this week (SHOCK! HORROR!) and go for some light bronzer on the edges of my face. Bonus, I can actually bring my bronzer compact to the office, since I’m taking a very early train. I’m also going to apply the lipstick on the go since it’s a very sheer coral lipstick that’s like My Lips but Brighter.

And for the first time there are swatches!

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L-R: Pink, copper, gold, layered to be a peachy gold shade. BCL brown liquid liner, Revlon Audacious Matte Balm (used as blush), Kiko Radiant Touch highlighter, Dior Addict unknown colour.

And full face pics!!!!

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Went without the liner today. It’s a pretty simple, summery and pretty look so I went overload on the blush. It’s much more washed out in the pictures, but I look like I was walking in the sun for awhile. Quite pretty but I think I’ll tone it down just a notch 😛

I like this look! Low contrast, very quick but very pretty.

Chanel Lilium Quad and NYX Milk in Action

Here is a better example of how NYX Milk is an amazing product, and how my buying questionable beauty items lead to… questionable beauty items.

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On the left is my Chanel Lilium Quad. It’s in tester packaging, and Lilium is an extremely old LE release (Autumn 2012? Can’t remember.)

My Nymphea, on the right, is very lovely and buttery, though the colours are very translucent, sheer wash of colour that would be dissed by most Western eyeshadow wearing standards as unpigmented.

Lilium though, is a little dodgy. I know that there are fake Chanel quads around for sure, but to copy an LE, obscure quad is quite a stretch. Still, it’s far more powdery and almost gritty compared to Nymphea. I use Nymphea quite often, but I was Not Impressed when I first swatched Lilium.

Today I did a comparison, one eye using primer and Lilium and the other using primer, NYX Milk and Lilium. I theorized that the white base and tackier texture of Milk would fix the powdery issue of Lilium.

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First set of swatches over primer, Second over NYX milk. See how the colour are far more vibrant? The forest green shimmer really comes out in the darkest shade, making it very jewelled.

 

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With primer only. See how everything looks very muted? Plus, there is quite a bit of eyelid texture because I really had to slather on layers and layers of shadow to get the colour to show…..

 

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SO much more vibrant. It took me half the time to do it with Milk than without. All shadows just needed 1 layer, all turned up much more vibrant. The shimmer looks much smoother instead of almost gritty in the previous picture.

 

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Comparison. Your left is with Milk, Right is without. Bad photography aside, you can see the clear difference in vibrancy. Sorry about the lack of the rest of make up….

 

Bottom line: I have no idea if this is the same Lilium they rolled out all those years ago. If it is, then Chanel SUCKS and they can suck my balls because no one should charge more than like $5 for this shit. Thankfully its great flaws are negated by NYX Milk, a $6 neverending base for EVERYTHING.

Sample Rundown #3

Moar samples!!! I’m running out of samples to review though, since I never shop retail and hence never get to enjoy samples. Most samples were passed on from generous friends and family.

 

Daylong SPF 50 Light Gel and Kids SPF 50 Lipodomal Lotion 

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Everyone needs SUNBLOCK! This and the other Daylong were free consumer samples, if you gave the company your mailing address. Both are very similar, and I suspect the only difference is minor changes in active ingredients. It has good emollience and spreads easily, but they are on the sticky side, and left a tacky, greasy finish, and not in an attractive way. Make up doesn’t slip over it, but the greasiness will show through. A LOT. I had to apply 2 full layers of powder foundation over it to mute the greasiness to a satin level (for reference, my usual sunscreen requires only 1 thin layer.) And powder foundation over doesn’t reduce its stickiness, you will still feel it if you touch your face. At least it didn’t burn my eyes. And I believe it’s waterproof too due to the oiliness. However, Ethylhexyl Mecinnimate is one of the top few sunblock ingredients, and if I wanted protection that degrades over time anyway, I would pick my super budget sunscreen any day.

Verdict: Will not purchase, not a bad sunscreen but definitely not one you would use if you were vain. Maaaaaybe you would use it on a kid or at the beach, but it’s not very different from the traditional, greasy sunscreens.

 

Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel

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This is my sample of the cult favourite sunscreen, with tons of loyal users even in America. I can see why people like it. It’s sinks in quick and leaves a dry, smooth finish (almost like a silicone primer.) No stickiness, no greasiness. Really, really nice. It’s can be a bit drying due to the lack of heavier ingredients and inclusion of alcohol, so a moisturizer underneath is a must.

Verdict: Might purchase, except we all know my one true sunscreen love that I will never cheat on. This is like $15 for a measly 30ml.

 

Innisfree Orchid Enriched Cream

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An okay cream, it’s kind of a gel-cream consistency but it’s quite sticky. It leaves my face sticky and never fully dries down, which I don’t personally mind but not sure if you would. I usually use this as a night cream. I find that it’s not all that hydrating because I used it in the US and I still got lots of dry flaky patches on the tip of my nose and around the nose.

Verdict: will not purchase, nothing special to me.

Weekly makeup basket W14 2016

This week, i really need to use up my green eyeliner that is seriously ancient. Since jewelled green is a tricky colour to pull off, I will be using it as subtly as I can.

I decided to tone it down and make it look better on my lashline by darkening it with black shadow. It also helps to set it. Since it’s so old it smudges far more than a brand new eyeliner. It has also shrunk in the packaging. The fact that it still manages to remain more or less intact (at least, not going all over my face) at the end of the day (with primer though, of course) and it manages to remain almost perfectly cat eye with some judicious use of black eyeshadow to set, is testament to its great staying power. Seriously, the Silky Girl Funky Eye lights are AWESOME pencil liners at a DIRT CHEAP price.

Other than a base shade and contour shade in the crease, I am not wearing any other shadow. Let the green cat eye do the talking 😛

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For lips, I needed something cool toned and relatively neutral, so I went with my Lip Theory in Catalyst again. Just as well, since I need to use it up. There’s just a teeny bit left in the sample.

I haven’t posted a snap of my look with the makeup actually on my face because I’ve been really rushing for work these couple of days, so I will try to do it tomorrow.

This is my last week staying at my current place super near my office for awhile. So I want to use my green liner while I still can spend some time on my make up. Next week will be all about the quick and easy looks  while I get used to a new routine. I might even have to do make up in the office toilet 😛