Month: September 2014

Urban Decay Pulp Fiction Mrs. Mia Wallace Lipstick

[Edited to add more photos – 12 November 2014]

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Following the eye shadow palette which I wrote about here, I have now the red lipstick and lip liner.

They are both named ‘Mrs. Mia Wallace’ and described as a ‘deep blood red’. I hemmed and hawed before purchasing these because I have quite a few nice red lippies already that don’t get reached for enough and I have no business buying anymore but we all know how that story goes. These are my first UD lip products so I’m no expert and can’t compare them with the usual UD formula. I’ll concentrate on the lipstick for this post and the one on the lip liner will follow.

The colour payoff of the Revolution lipstick is indeed very rich, intense and opaque in one swipe. Seriously impressed. My lips aren’t in the best condition at the moment (leaning on the dry side) but the lipstick doesn’t highlight nor sink into the lip lines. The lipstick is very creamy and emollient, doesn’t make my lips feel dry at all. I don’t know if it makes sense but it is ‘thick’. It doesn’t really tug per se but I do have to apply certain amount of pressure onto the lips to get a good swipe. [A lipstick that truly glides for me is the Givenchy’s Le Rouge first and foremost, then by Terry and the Guerlain Rouge Gs]. This could also be due to the lack of a tapered bullet as a tip for the Revolution lipsticks, which may have too creamy/heavy a body to employ a blunt cut like this. For a colour like Mia Wallace you should be using a lip brush anyway so it’s not too much of a problem I suppose. When it comes to the finish, the Revolution lipsticks promise a ‘creamy shine’ in general but I wouldn’t call the finish I get with Mrs. Mia Wallace shiny. To me shiny is like the Rouge Coco shines, or other balmy ones that really reflects and throws light back. This is more of a satin, which luckily I prefer anyway.

Now onto the shade!

First things first, I don’t know if it’s me but the colour I see in the tube isn’t the colour I get when applied. In the tube it’s a deep red with sort of a brown undertone, fitting UD’s ‘blood red’ description. When swatched, it’s a blue-based red. You can see a deep fuschia if you wipe on a white tissue. So even if it does apply opaque in one coat, if you want the deep dark red that’s promised you really need to go all out and intensify the application. *Then* it turns into this beautiful, deep red that for some reason looks quite neutral and you think might actually be flattering on a variety of skin tones. It’s weird.

I thought I would have more similar looking reds but I don’t. I actually have more blue-based reds than I previously thought. Anyway these are the ones I found that are closest to Mrs. Mia Wallace. Sorry the swatches aren’t so neat:

mia swatches

You can see Mrs. Mia Wallace (#2) isn’t particularly shiny and has pretty much the same finish as the others

Another photo: (more…)

Hakuhodo at Le Bon Marché

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PSA: You can buy Hakuhodo brushes (a small selection, mostly J series) at Le Bon Marché in Paris. The department store is paying homage to Japan and its culture, and has imported a lot of usually Japan-only (or Asia-only) fashion and beauty brands. There are also art exhibitions to look at and events and demonstrations to participate in.

The brushes are found on the 2nd floor (usually clothing). It doesn’t have a special stand and no one mans it, so you find what you like and keep it with you and bring it to the till. There are one example of each available brush opened and free for touching so you can feel how soft/firm they are. Prices vary but on the whole very reasonable and not too marked up. There’s a special glass case with really luxurious kabukis as well.

I chose three J series, 242G, 5523 and 210. I was going to get the bigger blush brush but figured I have brushes of similar shape at home but not one like the 210.Also got a pot of the makanai hand cream – sooo silky, this cream absorbs quickly and nourishes the hand but never leaving you feel greasy. Seriously impressed with this one. They have different scents but all of them are quite subtle and have the same fragrance base. The only exception is perhaps the yuzu one, which I’m tempted to get. Also saw the uka hand and nail butter – very good and luxurious but that costs 10 euros more. I think the makanai range are a bit more marked up than they usually cost in Japan. Seeing how I’ve been indulging myself a lot already I figured it’s best not to go too overboard.

The Japanese event continues til 18 October. Meanwhile still no sign of Tom Ford’s Nude Dip in-store nor online.

Small Zoeva order

[I’ve edited this post to reflect my thoughts on these brushes having used them for a while – 08/Oct]

I only became aware of the brand Zoeva about two months or so ago. I’ve got most of my brushes covered but I did want to get something ‘generic’ – items that do not warrant heading towards shu uemura for, for example. This was my order:

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First about the brushes. A close-up:

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I got a brow comb and a brow liner brush. I wanted to use these with the MUFE Aqua Brow. I have an old Bobbi Brown brow brush that I use with powders daily and didn’t want to mix that up with a cream product. These two brushes do their job and I’m quite happy with the performance of the brow liner in terms of precision, and it has the right amount of firmness. And I’ve always wanted one of these type of brow combs/brushes instead of using a spoolie. Really no complaints.

The only thing I will point out though is the brow brush is not weighted and is feather light, it looks and feels like a slim pencil (and cheap). I wasn’t expecting the weight so was surprised when I picked it up. Also the black paint on both of these brushes is glossy and not matte as I thought they were from looking on their website. The brow liner has more heft and is a black with silver sparkles, which I expect the other brushes to be. Just a heads up since you can’t tell from the pictures on the site.

Update: I’ve since washed and used the brow liner brush on a few occasions and unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be holding up well. The first few strokes with Aqua brow is nice and precise but when I start repeating the strokes the bristles divide into four to five separate ‘tufts’… like teeth on a comb but more spaced out. I can still get the colour on but it’s more shading than drawing, which was what I was shooting for.

Perhaps it’s the Aqua brow formula? Maybe it will perform better with a brow powder?

These brushes are 6.80 euros each so it’s not a catastrophe.

Anyway my favourite piece is the gate fold mirror. I’m taking this with me on my travels cos I hate doing my makeup in the bathroom (poor lighting) and my dingy compact mirror is just too small. This is slim, doesn’t take up space and stands on its own. Plus it lets me check out my profile haha.

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The base can be adjusted so you can control the reclining angle. The same goes for the ‘doors’. One of them however is a little looser than the other. Just hoping it wouldn’t flop out completely eventually. This is 8.50 euros. There’s an inscription on the mirror that is a little kitschy and that I’m not 100% sure of. I’ll leave that as a surprise to those who order it.

Shipping was quick and the items are nicely packaged. The brushes come with their own little plastic zip-lock pouches. Very generously sized in fact and you can use them to put whatever you want or your own set of brushes when traveling. All in all I’m happy with what I’ve ordered, Despite the hiccup, I still think it’s a range worth taking a look at if someone’s just starting out on makeup, or on a tight budget. The other brand to check out of course is Real Techniques. These ones from Zoeva do look a lot more elegant, but don’t really know the range well enough to discuss the quality of their brushes howeverReal Techniques have some really fabulous ones and from personal experience they are work horses that can take abuse. Do leave a comment if you have tried Zoeva’s brushes, and especially their makeup!

Urban Decay Pulp Fiction Eye Palette

[ETA you can find my post on the lipstick here]

Commemorating the 20th (!) anniversary of the film’s release, Urban Decay released 5 products to recreate the look of Mia Wallace. 1994 was a great year for film by the way, The Shawshank Redemption, Forrest Gump, Ed Wood just to name a few. There was also Priscilla, Queen of the Desert – someone should do a collection with that!

You’ll find no shortage of posts on the Urban Decay x Pulp Fiction release on the internet. The 5 pieces are the eye palette, lipstick with coordinating lip pencil, a glitter liner and a nail polish. I’ve had my eyes on this palette since the first previews and it’s finally available here in Europe. Around the same time there was news of a new Naked Basics from UD but I decided to pick this up instead. Phyrra’s post here helped seal the deal.

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I won’t be swatching these but will instead direct you to Temptalia who as always have excellent and accurate ones along with dupes suggestions. I’ve been playing with and wearing this the last couple of days and can say that I really like it. The textures are easy to work with, colours are pigmented and they look beautiful together. The ‘get the look’ card suggests putting ‘Vengeance’ only at the outer corner but I since I have hooded Asian eyes I find that it’s more flattering on me if I put that along the lash line as well, blend that out and add more emphasis on the outer ‘v’.
‘Tyranny’ is between a raw and burnt sienna, and with my colouring I need to be careful to blend it out so I don’t risk looking slightly bruised. Otherwise a very strong palette from Urban Decay. The small brush isn’t totally rubbish either and the mirror is surprisingly useful – good size and very sturdy. I tend to ignore the mirrors inside eye palettes but this is an exception.

Here are some similar shades I found in my stash:

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Despite my best intentions the only item we are really interested in is the NARS palette on the bottom right.

Swatches! (more…)