Pink to burgundy eyeshadow swatches – feat. Clinique & Kiko

I’ve been into red tone eyeshadow shades lately now that we are officially in the fall season. From pink to burgundy, the rich, creamy colors add a feminine touch to the eyes while making your eyes pop more when used as a lid color. 

I’ve found two affordable options that perform as great as high-end eyeshadows and they are from Clinique and Kiko. The Clinique 08 petal pop looks so pretty on the model below. I think this specific xx-pop eyeshadow and blush line from Clinique is underrated. It is long lasting, has just the right amount of pigmentation without being chalky.

Next up is an eyeshadow that I’ve been using frequently since I got it: the Kiko water eyeshadow in 203. It’s very pigmented and looks beautiful on the eyes. It does take some time to blend it out due to the deeper shade and thicker formula. It becomes even more intense when applied with a damp brush.


Burberry & MAC makeup swatch and the new black DW watch – repost

Lately I’ve been sick so I am sharing some others’ swatches instead.

The Burberry Tearose eyeshadow color looks so pretty. I feel you might be able to mix it with some nude color or use alone as blush too.

The MAC matte lipsticks are by no means new but some of the shades are extremely creamy and moisturizing for Matte lip formula. In terms of color, I really like the color Chilli.

I have a midi dial Daniel Wellington watch from a few years ago. It is simple, chic but that’s it. I’ve never thought of buying another one until I saw this new black & rose gold one. It looks cool and elegant at the same time.

October 2016 Sephora !play beauty box

Yesterday I was still looking at how people were speculating what the October Sephora play beauty box will offer, today after a long day of work, I was surprised to see it lying at my mail box already. This is probably the earliest days into the month that I receive the play box. Is it the best box? Not really, but it’s not a bad one either. Here is a picture of the full spoiler:

  • I have mixed feelings towards the Farmacy setting spray. While the ingredients themselves are natural and good for your skin in general, and the scent is herbal like as the brand name suggests, the spray nozzle is less than ideal. It squirts out a lot of water all at once, which could easily make a mess if you don’t hold it far enough from your face.
  • I don’t need another tiny hair product so I don’t know when I will get to use this coconut oil for my hair end from a brand that I’m not familiar with.
  • The two lippies included in the box are nice. The Smashbox liquid lippie in the shade of driver’s seat is a great wearable everyday shade for fall, and its formula is not overly drying either. The Estee Edit flash photo lip gloss is a clear shine gloss, which is supposed to make your teeth look whiter with its blue undertone. It can be worn on its own or on top of any lip color.
  • I have been using the Drunk Elephant night serum for a while and I love it. It helps improve your skin texture, acne scars while locking in a solid layer of hydration. So this small bottle is of no help to me as I have the big bottle. But if you haven’t tried it yet, this is a good opportunity to be converted. I’m now a big fan of Drunk Elephant skincare lines.

I heard Sephora sent out variations this month. What did you get in your box?

Best Skincare Sets at Sephora Now

It’s almost that time of the year when you can start to stock up on your favorite skincare products for the cold, brutal winter season. If you are looking for new products that will make your skin clearer, brighter, softer and smoother, look no further than Sephora as they have some of the best value skincare sets in the market now. Plus you get a different deluxe mini product with your $25 purchase starting yesterday (enter code: PERFECT8; I received a mini Sunday Riley Good Genes tube yesterday. Check out the gift with purchase calendar here on the Sephora website). I wanted to share with you some of my favorite skincare sets below based on my experience (yes I’ve tried most of these products, I’m a skincare addict 🙂 I have combination and acne-prone skin.

If you are looking for clearer & brighter skin, try this set from Dr. Dennis Gross. They do a great job at brightening your skin and the results are almost instant. These are expensive so it’s a good deal to try a few out in a value set.

If you are looking for smoother skin and care about ingredients, try this set from Drunk Elephant. I bought it last year and will restock soon. The night serum might sting your skin slightly on the first use but it hasn’t given me any issue since my 2nd use, and it has helped me with those little bumps and skin unevenness, and calmed my skin when I’m on the verge of a break-out (doesn’t help much when I do have acne though). Drunk Elephant is also known for its great ingredients, they are formulated without those harsh chemicals including parabens, sulfates or phthalates.

If you are looking for softer, more plumped skin and wanted to try out products from multiple brands, consider this Soko to Tokyo set. Japanese & Korean skincare brands can be very effective in treating dullness and dry skin concerns. Most of the brands included in this set are high-end brands (I love Amore Pacific products but am not a fan of the Belif cream although it’s raved by a lot of people), so it would be a good opportunity to try these out without breaking your bank.

These are some of my favorites now and I will share additional ones later this month. What’s on your list and what have you been loving lately? 




October Allure beauty box spoiler – Disappointed

I’ve been waiting for the spoiler of the October Allure beauty box for a while as the latest few Allure boxes have just been ‘meh’ in terms of brands and content they featured, and I’m on the verge of cancelling my subscription.

Well the October box failed again in my opinion as a beauty box ($15 per month) that boasts for careful curation of great beauty products skewing towards skincare. I have a high bar for skincare products and I don’t care for things that are just okay. I only repurchase skincare products that brought noticeable results and I’ve not found these type of delightful surprises from the past few boxes. I kept hoping that maybe the box will become better now it’s approaching the holiday season, but it doesn’t seem to be. I will give the box 2 more tries and then be done with it.

Here is the full spoiler:

  • Limited-Edition SpongellĂ© shower sponge scented with freesia and pear (sounds gimmicky)
  • Briogeo Don’t Despair Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask (it’s a good product but I already have 2 at home)
  • Mally Volumizing Mascara (I have 3 of my favorite mascara and 10+ in total so…)
  • Doucee Eyeshadow in Coppery Brown (interesting)
  • Klorane Dry Shampoo (Variant – subscribers may receive a different hair care item) This is the only item that I know I like and will use constantly but then there is no guarantee I will have it. I don’t want another travel size shampoo or conditioner… I’m not a big fan of variant box versions..
  • Tatcha Deluxe Indigo Body Butter OR Tatcha Deluxe Soothing Hand Cream (Tatcha as a high-end skincare brand places more emphasis on packaging & how their products feel on your face than the ultimate results on your skin. So I’m not blown away by the only high-end skincare brand included in this box).

Maybe I’m too blunt with my thoughts on this box but does any of you feel the same?

Drugstore makeup gem series: Physicians Formula shimmer strip palette 

I wanted to start a series on my blog dedicated to drugstore makeup gems and the first one I wanted to feature is something pretty 🙂 I fell in love with it when I was swatching it and enjoy using it from time to time. It is the Physicians Formula shimmer strip palette. It is a multi-purpose palette that can be used as a highlighter for both the face & eyes. A few pink and golden shades also can used as lid colors.

This palette stands out in 3 aspects:

  • Packaging: Cute! Just look at the little pink bow. I really adore it. Now it’s still paper packaging so don’t compare it to those $40+ high-end packaging, which is not fair. It’s steady enough to last 1-2 years and it’s light weight. The one thing I don’t like about the packaging is that it’s still a bit bulky for the amount of products in it. I don’t need the mirror on the back or the 2 poor quality brushes although they did put thought into fitting everything in a small space. I’d rather have a sleek case instead without the mirror or brushes. And I found this to be the case for a lot of Physicians Formula products. They have a thing for these added-on accessories. Maybe some people use these?


  • Formula: The first time I swatched the powders, I used the brush that came in the palette and was a bit disappointed because it appeared to be powdery. However, when I swatched it again with my fingers, it was day-and-night difference. The shades are soft, creamy, even buttery when you apply with your fingers. So I really don’t recommend using the brushes that came with the palette.
  • Color & Pigmentation: as you can see from the swatches, the shimmery colors really grab the light and they look so beautiful. The colors are also customizable with all these different shade options in similar color families. If you want something a bit different and unique, you can combine two colors to create your own pinky-golden-champagne combination shade. I did that in my swatches too. One thing I did notice is that the texture of the shades is not as fine-milled as my favorite baked highlighter from Laura Mercier. I think they still look very pretty on the cheeks but I probably wouldn’t use them as often for my eye looks.

Overall rating: 8.5/10

I consider this a must-have on my Drugstore Gem list and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking for an affordable highlighter. Thanks for stopping by!

My 7 lipsticks and lipglosses – review & swatches

I have never been crazy over lip products. I know it sounds crazy especially for someone who writes about beauty. I have relatively darker lips so a lot of lip colors don’t show up on me unless I use foundation or concealer to cover my natural lips first, which makes them dry and uncomfortable.

I also would rather much draw more attention to my eyes than my lips. I think lip products are so popular because they require almost no technique to apply and can change your look instantly if you go with a bold color.

Anyways, as someone who doesn’t own a lot of lip products, I wanted to show you every one of them that’s been opened. I either bought or received them in beauty boxes in 2016 as I usually get rid of lip products after they are over a year old. As they go on your lips and probably in the drinks and food you touch, I remind myself to pay attention to their expiration dates and formula. I guess that’s another reason I don’t like buying lip products as there is simply no way I can use up even 1/5 of these in a year if I have more than 10 in my collection, and almost half of my current collection are only in deluxe sample sizes.

Here is a snapshot of my 7 lip cuties (I have 2 more Kiko minis in my makeup bag that I will review in a separate post later).

From left to right are:

Sephora love spell -> Buxom Amsterdam -> Laura Mercier Bare Baby -> Tarte lip creme in Adorned -> Tarte lip crayon in Latergram-> Maybelline -> Pixi by petra matte Rose Naturelle


Here are the swatches, in the same order as the picture above.

You can see how I am so boring with lip colors from the swatches above. Two colors are kind of “my lip color but better” types (Buxom Amsterdam & Pixi Rose Naturelle). I also have one each for pink (Sephora love spell), coral (Maybelline) and red (Tarte Adorned lip creme), one deeper maybe nude (Tarte lip crayon in latergram) and one lighter nude gloss that is mostly translucent (Laura Mercier bare baby).

In addition, all of them have a moisturizing formula. I can’t stand putting on something that dries out your lips and excentuates your lip lines. No matter how rich the colors are, dry lips are not flattering.

Now here are my favorite four. The Pixi lipstick is great for fall as it has a rich darker red color but doesn’t look too deep or brownish when applied to my lips. They also feel very comfortable and moisturizing.

Next is the Tarte lip creme in Adorned. This is the only bright red color I own and it is a bit unique as it also has some golden shimmer mixed in the red base. I like to apply a thin layer of this to pair with a natural eye look.

Lastly, these two below are from Laura Mercier and Buxom. Both have good ingredients, look very natural, feminine and soft.

That’s it. Thank for stopping by 🙂