Monthly Archives: November 2014

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Marc Jacobs

This is the second lipstick in my High-end Lipstick Review Series & Give-away. I’m ranking lipsticks that retail for $30 CAD or more, and at the end of the series will pick my favourite and give away a lipstick from that brand to a subscriber. Next up is Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel.

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in "Cabaret"

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in “Cabaret”

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lovemarc Lip Gel in Cabaret

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in “Cabaret”

I got this full-sized lipstick in August as part of a 1000 point perk from Sephora. The Marc Jacobs lipsticks are $36.00 CAD. The shade “Cabaret” was exclusive to the VIB reward and is no longer available. The Lip Gels are described as a “color-saturated, long-wearing, gellified lipstick with a sleek shine finish.”

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel Cabaret swatch

Cabaret

Packaging

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I have to say I was a little disappointed by the design and quality of the packaging. It isn’t very remarkable. Black and silver: not overly original. The plastic tube feels very light-weight like a drugstore lipstick, although it does have the magnetic closure which is nice. The cover (which feels cheap) is oddly wide, but the bullet inside seems really small. You’re getting 0.12 oz (a MAC lipstick is 0.1 oz) so there isn’t less product, but the bullet seems skinnier and the tip much smaller than a typical lipstick which I didn’t like when I was trying to apply it. The lipstick itself is completely plain with no design imprinted on it like a lot of other high-end lipsticks. For $36.00, the design of the lipstick did not wow me. 1/3 Duchess points.

Formula

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I’m not sure about all this “gellified” and lip “gel” business, because I found the lipstick to have a pretty much standard lipstick type of formula. It is super pigmented though! It did apply smoothly and evenly, but I found it to be a little too dry and a little on the matte side for me. I would disagree that it “provides intense hydration” or that it has a “sleek shine finish”. Overall I’m in like with the formula, but not in love. 2/3 Duchess points.

Wear

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One thing you sure can’t fault Marc Jacobs for. When he says “long-wearing” he is not fooling around! This lipstick stays on until I remove it with make-up remover. It is so pigmented it also stains my lips. 3/3 Duchess points.

Scent/Taste

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Described as “subtly scented with vanilla”, the Marc Jacobs smells pretty much exactly like the MAC lipsticks which smell amazing! It is subtle like the MAC scent and has no taste. 3/3 Duchess points.

Sensitivity Test
Although I did find it a bit drying on my lips I don’t think I’ve had any reaction to the lipstick, so it passes the sensitivity test.

MAC Test

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I didn’t like the Marc Jacobs as much as MAC lipstick, which costs much less, so I have to deduct a Duchess point.

Would I pay $36 for another one?

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No, I don’t think so. This high-end brand lost points for packaging, plus I enjoy MAC lipsticks (at $17 cheaper) way more than this one. I don’t think the Marc Jacobs are worth the splurge. -1 Duchess point.

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel total: 7 Duchess points.

Here are my rankings so far:
ranking01
For more details on my High-end Lipstick Review Series and to read my Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème full review check out my first post.

Thanks for reading!
Love,
❤ Nerdy Librarian Girl

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I Can’t Stop Buying Revlon Shadow Links!

Revlon Shadow Links in "Bone"

Revlon Shadow Links in “Bone”

It started with Greige, then I picked up some more of the taupes and browns, and now I think I might officially have a Shadow Links “problem”. In my defense my drugstore had them on sale again (for $2.95 CAD) and I also can’t seem to resist anything miniature. The little Shadow Links are just so darn cute!

I decided to try out Bone a light, matte cream shade. It seriously reminded me of Brule from MAC (a “soft-creamy beige”). Brule is officially a “satin” finish but on me it looks completely matte. I use Brule so much it was in my Most Repurchased Makeup Products of All Time post. I love to have a matte shade that matches my skin tone to blend out shadows and use on my brow. I have to say I think Bone is a pretty close dupe for MAC Brule.

MAC Brule eyeshadow

MAC “Brule”

Revlon Shadow Links Bone Dupe for MAC Brule

A dupe for MAC’s Brule?

In the pan, Bone looks a little lighter and cooler toned, but once applied they are extremely similar. Bone blended really smoothly. It stayed on all day (I always use my Too Faced Shadow Insurance Primer). I did try to get a side by side swatch pic, but they just didn’t show up at all; both totally match my skin tone which is kind of the point but doesn’t make for much of a swatch 🙂

I just continue to be impressed by these little Shadow Links!

Thanks for reading!

Love,

Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

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High-end Lipstick Review Series: Hourglass

I’m always curious about the “prestige” or high-end makeup lines with their super fancy and glamorous packaging that comes at a high price. So for fun, I’ve decided to try doing a series where I review lipsticks from high-end brands, rate them and compare them, and decide which ones I think are worth the splurge and which ones aren’t. At the end of the series, I’m going to pick my favourite and give-away a lipstick from that brand to a subscriber in the shade of their choice!

For the series, to count as “high-end” the lipstick has to retail for $30 CAD or more. I came up with a rating scale that awards or deducts “Duchess points” (represented by HRH Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge of course!) based on packaging, formula, wear, scent/taste, the sensitivity test (whether or not it irritated my lips), whether I’d repurchase, as well as what I’m calling the “MAC test”. MAC lipsticks are my absolute favourite and I just can’t help measuring all other lipsticks against theirs.

High-end Lipsticks Review Series!

High-end Lipsticks Review Series!

For the first lipstick in the series I’m reviewing the Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick. I ordered mine online through Sephora for $35.00 CAD.

Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick Fresco

Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick in “Fresco”

The Velvet Creme Lipsticks are a “lustrous, cream formula lipstick that hydrates and softens lips.” After looking at swatches and reviews online, I chose the shade Fresco, described as a “rosy nude”.

Swatch Hourglass Lipstick Fresco

“Fresco” a rosy-nude

Packaging

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Love the packaging! The heavy-duty plastic tube feels very solid and substantial and has a clicking mechanism to keep it securely shut. In my pic it appears more black (sorry about that), but the tube is actually a rich, metallic chocolate brown, a unique and classy colour choice I think. The brand’s name is engraved down the side of the tube in gold Arts & Crafts style lettering. I love the hourglass design on the actual lipstick (a nice extra touch), and although not everyone is a fan, I really like the lipstick’s square tip. I had no trouble applying it and it wears to a more rounded shape. Overall very understated and modern packaging. 3/3 Duchess points.
Formula

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The formula is pretty much everything I could ask for in a lipstick: creamy, moisturizing, slightly sheer (but not too sheer). It has the perfect amount of sheen and feels very comfortable on the lips. It’s one of those lipsticks that makes you want to reach for it. 3/3 Duchess points.

Wear

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I found it long-wearing and non-drying. I also liked how it wears off subtly, gradually and evenly. 3/3 Duchess points.

Scent/Taste

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This is a very important factor for me that can make or break a lipstick. I was happy that the Hourglass lipstick doesn’t seem to have a discernible scent or taste – hooray! The ingredients lists “vanillin” (artificial vanilla flavour) but for the life of me I can’t detect any vanilla scent or taste.  It smells vaguely of clay, sort of like the old unscented Bare Escentuals lipsticks if anyone remembers those. 2/3 Duchess points.

Sensitivity
negative 1 duchess point

As much as I loved this lipstick, it didn’t pass the sensitivity test, which is weird because it’s formulated without parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, or phthalates. You know how when you get a new lipstick you really like, you get a bit obsessed with it? I was using only this lipstick and after a week, the skin around my lips, especially in the corners of my mouth got dry, cracked, red and irritated. When I stopped using the Hourglass lipstick, it went away. One ingredient that stood out to me as a bit unusual is “Honeysuckle Flower Extract” and I found an article in the Contact Dermatitis journal identifying it as a potential allergen.  -1 Duchess point.

MAC Test
Aside from the sensitivity issue, I would say I liked the Hourglass the same amount as my beloved MAC lipsticks. This counts as neutral in terms of duchess points.

Do I like it enough to pay $35 for another Hourglass lipstick?
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No but only because I had a reaction to it, which does happen to me with some beauty products. The curse of having sensitive skin, sigh.  -1 Duchess point.

Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick Total: 9/14 Duchess points

Stay tuned for more in my High-end Lipstick Review Series! If you like this idea for a series, please like this post. To be a part of my High-end Lipstick Give-Away, you just have to be subscribed to my blog through WordPress, email, or Bloglovin.

Thanks for reading!

❤ Love,

Nerdy Librarian Girl

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Sheer Up Lint Tint: Flower Brand First Impressions

Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint in Airy Orchid

Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint in “Airy Orchid”

I rarely go to Walmart so I haven’t tried any of the Flower makeup yet. Flower, Drew Barrymore’s cosmetic line, is sold exclusively at Walmart. While I was there recently, I thought I would try out something from the brand. I must say, overall I’m not really attracted to the Flower packaging, which may also be why its taken me so long to get around to picking something up.

I can’t resist a tinted lip balm though! I love the Revlon Kissable Balm Stains, the Clinic Chubby Sticks, and the Wet n Wild Mega Slicks Balm Stains, so I thought the Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint looked right up my alley. The shade selection is fairly limited with only 5 choices and the only one that really stood out to me was the darkest, “Airy Orchid”, a berry shade.

Swatch Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint Airy Orchid

Airy Orchid

When they say “sheer tint of colour” they aren’t messing around! It is really sheer on the lips. I had thought that if I liked this that I would try a few other shades, but since they are all even lighter than this one, I’m worried they wouldn’t show up at all. I also expected a bit of staining action from the Flower Lip Tint based on my experience with similar balmy lip crayons and tints from other brands (although to be fair Flower doesn’t claim it’s a lip stain). I did not find the Flower Lip Tint left any kind of stain at all. Once it was gone, it was totally gone, and it was gone pretty fast.

I liked how the Flower Lip Tint felt on my lips. It was very balmy and moisturizing. I also really liked that it was scent-free. So many drugstore lip products have cheap heavy fragrances added which I don’t care for that can irritate my lips. What I didn’t like is that it was very sheer, didn’t give any sort of staining effect, and didn’t last very long. It disappeared within an hour or so. I wouldn’t repurchase one. I think there are other similar lip products out there that I like better.

My first impression of Flower is kind of mixed. Let me know if there are any products from the line that you love that you think are worth trying.

The Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint is $7.98 CAD at Walmart.

Thanks for reading ❤
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

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L.A. Girl Glazed Lip Paints are Awesome!

L.A. Girl Glazed Lip Paints in Elude, Blushing, and Tempt

L.A. Girl Glazed Lip Paints

I saw a display of the L.A. Girl Glazed Lip Paints at the drugstore and was attracted to the giant selection of eye-catching colours. I hadn’t actually heard anything about them (which is weird because I think lots of people have been reviewing them), but at only $4.39 CAD I thought they’d be worth trying out. The Lip Paints are described as giving “the intensely pigmented appearance of a liquid lipstick” and “rich color with staying power.” I think the idea of a “liquid lipstick” or “paint” is what hooked me.

I was immediately loving Tempt the darkest shade, a vampy blackened plum. I also picked up Blushing, a medium mauvey-pink, and Elude a light pinky-peachy nude. There were no testers, so I had to go by the colour of the tube alone. I found Tempt and Blushing matched their packaging pretty closely, but Elude turned out to be lighter than I expected, but with the right lip liner can be wearable.

L.A. Girl Lip Paint Swatches: Elude, Blushing, Tempt

Elude, Blushing, and Tempt

I can’t get over how amazing these are! Once applied, they don’t feel like a lip gloss at all. They aren’t sticky and they actually aren’t overly glossy. They really do feel like a liquid lipstick. They have a slight peppermint scent that fades immediately but they don’t have a noticeable taste. They feel very luxurious and hydrating on the lips; not drying at all. And they stay on FOREVER! (well, not actually forever, but they are very long-wearing). Elude and Blushing apply quite smoothly and evenly. Tempt I had to work with a little bit to get an even application but I often have that issue with very dark lip shades.

The Lip Paints immediately reminded me of the OCC Lip Tars. They’re similar in consistency and texture, and even have the same peppermint scent. Like the Lip Paints, the OCC Lip Tars are very pigmented and opaque and long-wearing.

Are the L.A. Girl Lip Paints a dupe for the OCC Lip Tars?

Are the L.A. Girl Lip Paints a dupe for the OCC Lip Tars?

Elude Lip Paint VS Hush OCC Lip Tar

“Elude” Lip Paint VS “Hush” OCC Lip Tar

I love this OCC Lip Tar shade, Hush, which is very similar to Elude. Makeup artist Lisa Eldridge used it on Kate Winslet for the cover of Bazaar. But, I just haven’t enjoyed the Lip Tar. I don’t think the L.A. Girl Lip Paints are a dupe for the Lip Tars, because I actually like them more than the Lip Tars. The Lip Tar is a bit thinner and runnier in consistency than the Lip Paint (as you can kind of see from the swatch) and fussier to apply. I also found the Lip Tar VERY drying. The Lip Paints have vitamin E and peppermint oil. Not sure if that’s what’s making a difference, but in any case they just feel more comfortable to wear.

The OCC Lip Tars are $22.00 CAD. I think the much less expensive Lip Paints are a better alternative. I’m not sure if you can mix the colours the same way you can with the Lip Tars though.

My one piece of advice about the Lip Paints would be to wear a lip liner with them, because they can tend to travel outside your lip line.

Have you tried them?

Thanks for reading ❤

Love

Nerdy Librarian Girl

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Review: Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick

Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick

Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick in 095 “Please Stay Plum”

I picked up this lipstick after watching Lisa Eldridge’s “Berry Stained Lips Makeup Tutorial” where she had mixed a really pretty custom lip colour for a runway show. She gave some dupes for the berry shade, and the Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick in “Always Plum” was one of them. Here in Canada, the shade is called “Please Stay Plum”. I don’t know for sure if the shade I have is exactly the same as the UK version though. Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick is about $8.99 CAD.

This colour certainly is beautiful, especially since I am really, really into plum lip shades right now.

Swatch: Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick in Please Stay Plum

Swatch: Maybelline SuperStay 14HR Lipstick in “Please Stay Plum”

Unfortunately I can’t stand this lipstick 😦 No matter how pretty the shade is and how many times I have tried to force myself to wear it, I just can’t get past the awful texture and terrible scent of the Maybelline SuperStay 14HR lipstick. The texture is dry and gritty, and it has a strong sugary sweet fragrance that seems artificial and cheap (Why do brands feel the need to add such heavy scents to lip products? Is it just me, or are other people turned off by this?).

I would love to find a similar shade but in another lipstick line. Lisa mentioned Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick in 128 “Starry Eyed” – but I couldn’t find it in my local drugstores – and Bobbi Brown Lip Color in “Berry”, but that shade is not on the Sephora Canada website.

I’d love suggestions for your favourite plum lip shades!


Thanks for stopping by ❤
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

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What are you Picking up at the Sephora VIB Sale?

Its the most wonderful time of the year! The Sephora VIB sale is here, when VIB & VIB Rouge members get 20% off all purchases. Today is the last day of the sale. I took advantage of the discount mostly by restocking items I was nearly out of (and picking up a few new things I haven’t tried). Here’s what I ordered:

Sephora VIB SaleWhat are you getting at the Sephora sale?

Thanks for stopping by ❤

Love,

Nerdy Librarian Girl

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Two (Belated) Halloween Looks

I haven’t posted much recently. I take all my blog photos in natural light, and we are just having the ickiest, greyest, rainiest, darkest fall here in eastern Canada. On top of that we are in daylight savings time now, and it starts getting dark at about 4:30 pm! By the time I get home from work its completely dark, making photo-shoots pretty much impossible. I have gotten some great new stuff lately, so I’ve decided to just get cracking and share it with you guys and do my best with whatever lighting this Canadian gal has been given 🙂

So today, I wanted to share two looks I did last week for Halloween and for the Day of the Dead, November 1-2. We threw our second annual Day of the Dead party (you can checkout my look from last year) and had collected lots of great Día de Muertos decorations over the past year while traveling, so this year’s party was even better than last year’s I think, complete with Mexican-inspired food and lots of tequila.

This was our ofrenda:

ofrenda

La Ofrenda, or altar honouring the memory of loved ones who have passed away

This year I felt like doing pink sugar skull makeup. I absolutely loved this skull fascinator I found at Bonnie & Clyde’s while I was in BC.

day of the dead makeup

Pink sugar skull makeup for our 2nd annual Day of the Dead Party

Here’s what I used:pink sugar skull makeup
Eyes:

  • Too Faced Shadow Insurance (I used it all around and under my eyes)
  • MAC Smolder Eye Kohl
  • Maybelline Color Tattoo Metal 24HR Cream Gel Shadow “Inked in Pink”
  • Wet n Wild “Spoiled Brat” eyeshadow trio (just the pink shade)
  • MAC Da Bling
  • MAC Expensive Pink

Nose:

  • MAC Blackground paintpot
  • NYX eyeshadow single 01 “Black”

Lips:

  • NYX Milk Jumbo Pencil
  • MAC Soar Lip Pencil
  • MAC Smolder Eye Kohl

I used some of my very tiny Real Techniques brushes – the Detailer brush from the Core Collection, the Accent brush from the Starter Set, and the Fine Liner brush. And of course, don’t forget to set  all of that with a setting spray. I used UD All Nighter.

For Halloween, at the library where I work we all dress up every year according to a theme we’ve picked, like characters from our favourite book or movie. This year we were all characters from TV shows. I had just watched Sam from Pixiwoo’s Joan Collins tutorial and knew I wanted to try to recreate the over the top 80s look!

Joan Collins / Alexis Carrington Colby makeup

Halloween Costume: Joan Collins / Alexis Carrington Colby

Here’s what I used for my version of Alexis:joan collins / alexis makeup
Eyes:

  • Too Faced Shadow Insurance (not pictured)
  • Makeup Geek Eyeshadow Pans in “Wisteria” and “Duchess”
  • “Venus” from the UD Naked Basics palette for that frosty 80s brow highlight
  • NARS Albatross for even more brow highlight!
  • Maybelline Waterproof Black Liquid Liner
  • Revlon Bold Lacquer Mascara (full review)

Cheeks:

  • Sleek Blush By 3 palette 364 “Sugar”. I used the dark reddish shade “Turbinado”
  • NARS Albatross

Lips:

  • MAC Spice Lip Pencil (as Sam said “if you can’t see the lip liner, you’ve failed” lol)
  • NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in “New Lover”
  • MAC “Angel” Lip Gloss

This look was really fun to do. I love Halloween! Its such a great excuse to play with makeup looks that you don’t normally wear everyday.

Thanks for stopping by ❤

Love

Nerdy Librarian Girl

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