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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Exploring my Sleek palettes collection, Day 1: Graphite

The next four days are going to be a journey into Sleek heaven. I don't own many of the covetable UK treats, but the four I do own get much love. From what I understand, Sleek is a drugstore line targeted towards women of color; all of the items are highly, highly pigmented. The eyeshadow palettes are themselves collectors' items, since many of them are limited edition. Of the four I own, I don't think any of them were limited edition (except maybe the Sunset palette, but I will need someone to verify that for me).

Today's focus is on the Graphite palette. This was a gift from my ladyboss, and it is my favorite of my four Sleek palettes.

(in cool lighting, no flash)

The Graphite palette contains every color anyone would ever need for a dramatic (meaning shimmery and dark) smokey eye. You can do a silver smokey eye, a grey/gunmetal smokey eye, a black smokey eye, a dark blue smokey eye, or a purple smokey eye. Now, at first glance, most of the colors appear to be almost identical to each other. This, however, is the genius of the palette - you can do a real gradient smokey effect because of the difference in the under- and overtones of the colors.

(in warm lighting, no flash - hey, look it's Spongebob and Patrick in the back!)

Here is a description of the top row of colors, from L to R:
  • A very shimmery, almost silvered white.
  • An almost frosted opalescent pale pink-beige.
  • A metallic light to medium silver (it may just be a skin tone thing, but this color leans almost taupe-ish on me).
  • A shimmery gunmetal grey.
  • A darker gunmetal grey. Besides being a shade darker than the previous color, this color also leans warmer than its predecessor. This color is also more metallic than its predecessor.
  • A stormy deep blueish grey. This color is also warmer than its predecessor, and not as metallic.
(swatches done in cool lighting, no flash)

Here is a description of the bottom row of colors, from L to R:
  • A blackened blue-grey. This color is cooler and more metallic than the last color on the top row.
  • A very shimmery black.
  • A matte black (every Sleek palette has a matte black, and it's a glorious matte black).
  • A somewhat sheer and a bit chunky deep blue (it appears to be blue shimmer over a black base).
  • A blue-toned deep, dark purple.
  • A red-toned deep, dark purple.
(swatches done in warm lighting, no flash)

Isn't it cool how each shade is subtly different from the next? I feel like this would have been perfect had one of the top two highlight colors had been matte, but whatever. I use this palette quite often, since it's so easy to just pick and choose from the shades to create an instant smokey eye. Using a multitude of the shades together creates a "WOW" sort of a smokey eye, and is incredibly dramatic. This isn't necessarily the Sleek palette I'd recommend if you could only get one (that'd be the Storm palette), but it is definitely my favorite.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I'm nutty over Wet'n'Wild Nutty!

As any reader of Pink Sith knows, I am crazy over taupe eyeshadows. It's a veritable mental disorder at this point, actually. I can't help it: taupe is just such a perfect, complex color.

Anyway, I hadn't paid Wet'n'Wild any attention since the line was revamped earlier this year. The lovely Gianna at Nouveau Cheap has raved about the line recently, and had been telling me for months to pick up Nutty eyeshadow single. Even my beloved Amy at Cafe Makeup posted about Nutty a while back. When Amy talks, you better believe I listen...yet I still hadn't bought the damned eyeshadow, though. Can you believe that?!

This past weekend I needed a real pick-me-up, so while I was at Duane Reade I picked Nutty up finally, figuring that $1.99 was a very small price to pay for a good mood.

I seriously cannot believe I waited so long. Nutty is gorgeous! Just look at that cute little swirly compact of taupe happiness!

(with flash, cool-toned lighting)

(without flash, warmer light)

Nutty is a glowy warm-toned taupe. Despite its warm base, it seems almost to have a silver sheen on my skin. The color itself is light but pigmented enough to show up on my MAC NC40 skin. The texture is divine - soft, but not as soft as a LORAC or Stila eyeshadow. You could have told me this was a $20 eyeshadow, and I would have believed you.

(without flash, cooler light)

(without flash, warm light)

Nutty works well alone as a wash shade, but it also plays nicely with other taupes. I wore this the other day with Edward Bess Intimate in the crease, and I loved it. It just might be my new favorite taupe combination.

(LOOKIT, SO PRETTY! warm, but with a silver sheen. I die!)

I cannot recommend Nutty enough! For $1.99USD you absolutely cannot go wrong.

So, are there any other drugstore eyeshadows I should be checking out?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tali's Tag!

So the lovely Tali at The Gloss Goss posted a survey tag of "Would you rather..." on her blog and invited everyone to participate! So, here's my survey! =)


Would You Rather..
Never use mascara again or bronzer again?
Oh this is easy - I'd never, ever give up mascara! As much as I love bronzer, mascara is just way too important to give up.
Only be able to buy high end make-up or drugstore make-up again?
Hm, this is hard. I'm a high-end gal at heart, but drugstore makeup has really stepped up its game lately. However, at the end of the day all of my HGs are high-end so...high-end it is!
Be In Love or Be Loved?
Hm, I'd rather be loved than be IN LOVE. Being in love is too damn tricky, thank you!
Go out with chipped nail varnish or unshaven legs?
Oh hell no, my legs are NEVER unshaven. There you go. I rarely ever wear nail polish (I have on some chipped polish right now, haha), but my legs are my favorite feature so I always have them smooth and silky.
Go out with messy hair or no make-up?
No makeup. My hair is my trademark! It's always perfectly curled and frizz-free. The picture below is a good example:
I'm at work, totally makeup-less, but the hair looks cute as hell!
Leave the house with an orange tan or peroxide-gone-wrong ginger hair?
Oh, orange tan. I'm from the Bronx, where every girl looks like she could be on "Jersey Shore", so it'd be perfectly acceptable of me to walk around looking like a carrot.
It were Winter forever or Summer forever?
WINTER FOREVER AND EVER! I hate the heat! HATE IT!
Leave the house with dried toothpaste drool or crusty yellow sleep eyes?
Oh, dried toothpaste drool. I don't do the whole crusty-eyed thing. I always look wide awake even when I'm not. The picture I posted above? I was running on probably an hour or two of sleep. Do I look dead? Nope.
Give up all MAC or Illamasqua products?
I don't like Illamasqua. I don't like MAC much either. I can give both up.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

NARS, NARS, NARS! Part Two: The Eyeshadow Singles

Here's the companion entry to my last post: my NARS eyeshadow singles.


I have 13 eyeshadow singles, and they're well-loved. NARS just does eyeshadows so right. I am especially partial to the more neutral colors in the line, yet my favorite single is the blood-red Grenadines. Here's a (terrible) picture of me wearing it - I was at a Slipknot concert back in 2009, and my faded red lips were courtesy of the $8 Bud Lights at Madison Square Garden:


All but one of these singles is a powder. The one cream single is Mykonos, and while I adore the color I do not adore its lasting power. Mykonos doesn't hold up too well on my lids, but that never stops me from wearing it (or from wearing it on my cheeks or lips!). Also, I threw in my Aigle Noir pencil just for consistency's sake.


The sad little shadow on the right with Aigle Noir on top of it is Cairo.
The top row from L to R: Strada, Fez, Mekong, Abyssinia, Bali, and New York.
The bottom row from L to R: Himalayas, Cyprus, Ashes to Ashes, Mykonos, Nepal, and Grenadines.

Close ups of the singles:

Strada, Fez, Mekong, Ashes to Ashes, Cyprus, Himalayas (clockwise from top left).

The flash blew out Himalayas because of the interesting shimmerfire in it. Himalayas appears to be pearly white but when swatched it has this incredible pinkish-red duochrome. It's unbelievable over a black base, FYI.


Abyssinia, Bali, New York, Cairo, Grenadines, Nepal, and Mykonos (clockwise from top left)

Abyssinia is an amazing highlight shade, just another FYI. And god, just LOOK at Grenadines. It's perfect, truly. Matte blood-red, it gets no better!

Swatches:


Grenadines, Nepal, Mekong, Strada, Fez, New York, and Abyssinia (from L to R).

Can we discuss the awesome rose-gold shimmer in Mekong and the pretty bright gold shimmer in Strada? Awesomeness. And Fez is just a knockout.


Mykonos, Ashes to Ashes, Cyprus, Himalayas, Cairo, and Bali (from L to R).

Cairo is more pigmented than it appears on my arm: it's a bizarre grey-taupe-mauve that's just lovely. Oh, look at Himalayas - isn't that pink-red duochrome just pure sex?

My favorites: Grenadines (which isn't really wearable for most people, but screw it, I love red eyeshadow), Nepal, Bali, and Mekong. Nepal, Bali, and Mekong are seriously must-haves: Nepal is the perfect brightening wash, Bali is a workhorse of a shade (great for brows, crease, outer V, or liner), and Mekong smokes up any eye instantly.

NARS, NARS, NARS! Part One: The Eyeshadow Duos

I know, I know - it's been a long time since I posted! I'm sorry. I write for too many blogs, and I completely forgot about my own little personal one. If it's any consolation to you, I'll be posting here a lot more: Momma Bunny bought me a new digital camera! Now, I can take quality EOTDs and stash pics.

Speaking of stash pics, today I bring you my somewhat small (or maybe it's just small to me) NARS eyeshadow collection.


While reading The Beauty Look Book today at work (I clicked Sabrina's NARS tag and read every entry that mentioned NARS), I was reminded of some eyeshadow singles and eyeshadow duos that I forgot I owned. Yes, I forget that I own things because my collection is not very well-organized.

In my quest to remind myself of what I owned, I decided to take pictures. This entry will feature my NARS duos, and my next entry will feature my NARS singles. I'm also swatching them, but please remember that I'm no Karla Sugar - my swatches are not amazing.

Just a note - the lines separating the duo swatches were created with my NARS Aigle Noir Soft Touch Shadow Pencil. I reviewed this back on Pink Sith when I purchased it. Also, all but one of these duos were purchased by me. The one that wasn't was a gift. Enjoy!


The lone duo all the way at the left is Tzarine.
The top row from L to R: Habanera, Cheyenne, Rajathastan, Kalahari, Brazil.
The bottom row from L to R: Brousse, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Bohemian Gold, Taiga.

Close ups of the duos:

Tzarine, Habanera, and Brousse,(clockwise from left)


Cheyenne, Rajasthan, Kuala Lumpur, and Tokyo (clockwise from top left)


Kalahari, Brazil, Taiga, and Bohemian Gold (clockwise from top left)

Swatches:


Bomenian Gold, Brazil, Kalahari, Rajasthan, and Tokyo (from L to R; also, all swatches are done with the shade from the right side of the palette first, then the shade from the left side)


Taiga, Cheyenne, Kuala Lumpur, Habanera, Brousse, and Tzarine (from L to R; also, all swatches are done with the shade from the right side of the palette first, then the shade from the left side)

Also notice how sheer the lighter sides of Taiga and Kuala Lumpur are - those are heavy swatches. I am a MAC NC40, and they are very light but still noticeable on my skin. The lighter side of Kuala Lumpur is more pigmented on my eyes; it's reminiscent of MAC Melon pigment. The lighter side of Taiga makes a good highlight/inner corner shade, but is too light for my eyelids. Compare these colors to the lighter sides of Rajasthan, Tokyo, and Tzarine: those you can actually see on my skin, and can be used as lid shades.

My favorites: Habanera, Brousse, Kalahari (in my honest opinion, Kalahari is an absolute must-have for any makeup aficionado).

Bohemian Gold is discontinued. Rajasthan is limited edition. The other palettes can be found still.