[REVIEW] ZOEVA The Basic Moment Blush Palette

I love multi-palettes that help you to do so much more than makeup for one feature, so it’s little wonder that I wanted to try out this palette from ZOEVA.


Product Description

In honor of the most precious moments, the ZOEVA brings an ethereal collection of gorgeous, vitamin E-enriched shades to enhance your favourite features.

A darker contouring shade flawlessly shapes the face while the champagne highlighter illuminates the complexion with a veil of shimmering gold. To finish the look, the universally flattering peach-toned blush imbues cheeks with a subtle flush of colour.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 26

Image credits

Ingredient List

Unfinished, Yet To Come: Talc, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Magnesium Stearate, Mica (Ci 77019), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dimethicone, Dimethiconol, Phenoxyethanol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Dehydroacetic Acid, Cera Alba/Beeswax/Cire D’abeille, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, [+/- Ci 77891 (Titanium Dioxide), Ci 77499 (Iron Oxides), Ci 77491 (Iron Oxides), Ci 77492 (Iron Oxides), Ci 15850 (Red 7 Lake), Ci 19140 (Yellow 5 Lake)]. //

Liquid Clock: Mica (Ci 77019), Talc, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Magnesium Stearate, Dimethicone, Dimethiconol, Phenoxyethanol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Cera Alba/Beeswax/Cire D’abeille, Dehydroacetic Acid, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Ci 77891 (Titanium Dioxide), Ci 77491 (Iron Oxides), Ci 77492 (Iron Oxides), Ci 77499 (Iron Oxides).

Some key points:

Mica: creates a natural shimmery finish, since it can be milled to a fine powder. Because it is naturally produced it is a particularly well-loved ingredient among organic and natural beauty brands, and is safe to use on almost all skin types with little to no side effects (source)

Dehydroacetic Acid: A fungicide and bactericide predominantly used as a preservative in cosmetics. It works by killing off and preventing the growth of microorganisms that contribute to a product’s decay (source)

Apricot kernel oil: Apricot seed oil contains high fatty acids, Vitamin E and A which can be used to moisturise and nourish dry and mature skin (source)


Packaging: This is considered pretty compact for a palette, and I like that it’s thin enough to fit easily into my luggage. It is, however, a little too big to put inside my makeup pouch.

Colour: I love the shades included here for each product use (blush, highlighter, and contour), because they are so universal.

Peach-pink works perfectly for most people to create a healthy flush, and it’s also my go-to colour for blushes. The bright, vibrant gold in the highlighter is also great – I always steer clear of silver highlighters because of my warm undertones, which those cool-toned ones don’t look very good on.

The brown for the contour is also just right. I’ve had some trouble with other contours because the brown wasn’t exactly a shade that worked for me, but this is perfect.

Colour payoff & intensity: I was a little surprised by how light these were when applied to my skin, especially since this was a Western brand. It’s a given that Korean brands offer the least colour payoff and so I never expect intense colours from their products, but this one really did take me back by surprise.

It’s not entirely a bad thing: I like subtlety in my makeup, and a tinge of peach or sparkle is enough to give me the glow I want.

However, I don’t really like the contour much because it’s quite patchy. It’s sufficiently good enough for contouring your nose and brow bones, but I don’t really see much of an effect when I attempt to contour my jaw.

Staying power: I haven’t found any need to touch up on my blush, highlighter, or contour even after a long day, so I think it’s safe to say that these work great even for the days where you are out for more than 12 hours.


Final Verdict

I bring this around on my travels because I love the convenience that I can get from one palette. Granted, there’s not much variety in terms of shades, but I’ll swap variety for convenience any day if I’m struggling to stay below my baggage weight limits.

The one thing that I don’t really like from this palette is the contour. It’s clearly not the best contour product you can get, which is a little disappointing, especially since the blush and highlighter are good.

I do think that this palette is really worth the price tag. It’s cheaper than most other palettes you can get out there, and works just as well (sans the contour).

I highly recommend this to those who are just starting out in makeup and want a basic palette to hone your skills in applying blush, highlighter, and contour. For those who are more experienced and want something more challenging and exciting to work with, this may not be your cup of tea.


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮✮✮✮

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[WISHLIST] March 2019

Almost everyday, a brand releases a product or collaboration that is sure to tempt you into buying, even if you already have a ton of unused products on your vanity table. That’s how I feel every time I scroll Instagram, so I wanted to share some products that’s been on my wishlist for some time!


Canmake Cream Cheek

I feel like it’s no secret by now that I’m quite obsessed with blushes (oops). It’s probably one of my favourite collectibles, right after lipsticks.

Firstly, I really can’t resist this cute packaging from Canmake. It looks like a gorgeous jewel, and I have a serious penchant for all these pretty and feminine shades.

I’m also at this stage where I’m trying to move on from powder blushes (slowly but surely) and buy more liquid & cream ones. Considering that this cream one is said to be very popular in Japan, how could I leave this out of my wishlist, right?


Glossier Cloud Paint

I’ve been eyeing Glossier for the longest possible time, but I never got around to buying any of their products. For starters, it’s not easily available in Singapore, and the price point is even less accessible :/ I also feel that their products, which focus more on ‘good skin’ and letting your natural beauty shine, are really just meant for people who already have good skin (I don’t).

However, I think this blush from Glossier is actually one that would work well especially if you have bumpy, acne-plagued skin. I’ve seen some swatches of these and I’m quite impressed. This blush gives you a flush that comes close to the dewy and barely-there look that K-beauty brands have been championing since forever.


Canmake Marshmallow Powder

If there’s one thing in my makeup routine that barely changes, it’s my setting powder. I alternate between Innisfree and Althea, but I think maybe it’s time for me to try something new soon.

I feel that the Korean glass skin is a little out of reach for me, but the Japanese mochi skin is probably not as difficult to attain, and this is one product that looks like it will give you seriously bouncy & smooth skin!


Heimish Bulgarian Rose Hydrogel Eye Patch 

My eyebags and dark eye circles are so bad these days, I feel like they may be stuck there forever, even if I manage to get 8 hours of sleep someday. I haven’t been paying much attention to eye care as well and felt quite guilty about it, so I got quite interested when I saw these online.

Plus, the patches are made of pink, glittery hydrogel – so pretty! Now who could say not to pretty skincare products, right?


Etude House Quick & Easy Blur Tint

I have a love-hate relationship with Etude House’s lip products, but thankfully my opinion of them has been getting better these days.

I saw these on Instagram for some time and I thought this was an interesting lippie that EH was pushing. This definitely looks like something Innisfree is already selling (Vivid Cotton Ink). Peripera has, well, obviously already been there with their Airy Velvet Tints, and even 3CE is famous for their velvet lip tints as well, so this is not a new innovation or anything.

Even so, I’m curious to see how different these blur tints from Etude House will be. One thing I really like about EH’s tints is that they are truly made to last, with a staying power that even Peripera finds it hard to beat.

[REVIEW] Colourpop Pressed Powder Blush

I got this last year, but totally forgot about reviewing it. To be honest, I also forgot about using it for a while because I had gotten a few new blushes and got so addicted to using them that this just slipped my mind. However, I finally got around to using this blush extensively again, so here is my review!


Product Description

Brighten your complexion with the perfect natural flush of colour in a soft and buildable powder blush.
Who could say goodbye to this soft peachy pink.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: USD 7


Ingredient List

For the shade #Why, Hello…

TALC, NYLON-12, MAGNESIUM MYRISTATE, PTFE, ETHYLHEXYL PALMITATE, OCTYLDODECYL STEAROYL STEARATE, DIMETHICONE, PHENOXYETHANOL, CAPRYLYL GLYCOL, OCTOCRYLENE, ETHYLHEXYLGLYCERIN, HEXYLENE GLYCOL, BISMUTH OXYCHLORIDE (CI 77163), CARMINE (CI 75470), IRON OXIDES (CI 77492, CI 77499), MICA (CI 77019), RED 7 LAKE (CI 15850), TITANIUM DIOXIDE (CI 77891).


Packaging: I really wanted to give this a high score because I appreciate blushes that are this compact and easy to keep, but I once dropped this and the magnetic clasp never worked again, so I haven’t been able to close it shut since then.

On the other hand, I have to say that this packaging really protects your blush very well. Most people would end up with a blush that’s shattered and destroyed, had they dropped it the same way I did, but I was rather amazed to find that my blush remained intact! Hence, I’m quite conflicted on how I should grade and assess this.

Colour: I’m also very conflicted about this shade I bought. Why, Hello… is described as a “soft peachy pink” by Colourpop, and I definitely agree. However, I can’t really tell if it’s as ‘warm-toned’ as it is described. I feel that it may actually look even better on people with cooler skin tones.

Also, I don’t know if it’s just me but my shade doesn’t really look like the one on the website, or in other people’s photos. Meh.

Colour payoff & intensity: The pigmentation is pretty good, so I don’t have to grab and slap on a huge amount of product in order to see a decent tinge of colour (cough K- and J-beauty products).

However, I do find that the application is not quite as even or easy as I would like, which is a bit of a pity. I think you can chalk this up (hahahha) to the chalkiness of the product. It’s one of the chalkiest blushes I’ve had in my collection – the rest are all rather finely-milled powder, and less chunky as compared to this one.

Staying power: I haven’t found any need to touch up on my blush, and I still do see a fair bit of the blush even after a long day, so I have no major issues with this.


Final Verdict

I initially thought that this was a pretty affordable blush, then I got the ones from MISSHA and realised that there are, obviously, much better and much cheaper options out there. Granted, the amount of product probably isn’t quite the same, but you get my point.

I think this is one of the first few times I’ve not been impressed by a Colourpop product (one including the Satin Lip). Sadly.


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮

[REVIEW] 3CE Velvet Lip Tint

So after my first experience with a 3CE lip product, I decided to try out their lip tints, which I reckon are very popular among beauty junkies.


Product Description

What it is:

A lip tint with a sherbet-like texture that melts into the lips and leaves a natural tinge with a matte finish.

What it does:

Velvet lip tint incorporates an oil-packed formula specially made to deliver a vivid and velvety matte texture. When this tint is applied, the lips are first encased with a layer of oil upon which pigments gently melt, resulting in a dewy sensation with a matte finish.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 23


Ingredient List

See the full list here, together with information on safety and irritants.


Packaging: It looks very similar to my other lip tints (in particular, the CLIO one), so nothing much in particular that is really mind-blowing. I do find the 3CE tube to be much thicker than the CLIO one – probably because it contains more product as well.

Colour: I bought the shade #GOING RIGHT, which appears to be a very gorgeous MLBB shade. However, the real swatch shows that this shade contains a little more tinge of orange than I had expected. I personally also feel that it leans more towards a terracotta red – it’s great for me, because as of late I’ve been collecting lipstick shades like this, but you may want to take note of this if you are very particular about getting a colour that’s identical to the marketing photo.

The colour payoff is, of course, very good for a matte lip tint. It’s definitely better than the Mood Recipe Matte Lip Color. The texture is waxy and applies evenly on the lips, which I really like as well.

Staying power: I wasn’t super impressed by the Mood Recipe Matte Lip Color’s staying power, but I feel that this holds up better than its bullet lipstick counterpart.

You still get a fair bit of tint left even after an oily meal, although it’s not quite as long-lasting as you would expect from matte lipsticks. However, I’ve come to terms that 3CE lipsticks are not the best when it comes to long-lasting lipsticks that don’t budge.


Final Verdict

As beautiful as 3CE’s Instagram photos are, I sometimes still feel that the brand is a little overhyped for its quality and price. There are certainly other brands can offer the same type of product at a lower price, and probably with better staying power as well.

That being said, I still do enjoy using this lip tint from 3CE. It’s not bad, just that I wouldn’t strongly recommend that you buy it, because I don’t think it really offers anything that’s different or better than other brands.


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮✮

[REVIEW] Etude House KitKat Play Color Eyes Mini Eyeshadow Palette

This is probably all the rage on the Internet now, and I have to admit that this is another one of my impulse purchases. I read about it on Allure, found out that Etude House was selling this in Korea, and immediately placed an order for it on Shopee.

Everything happened really quickly, and I was still kind of in disbelief that I got this so fast. I’ve never been one to hop on trends and buy new product launches because I’m really not into that kind of thing, so you can imagine how much I really wanted to try this out!


Product Description

In the original milk chocolate and a white strawberry chocolate packaging each one includes 6 shades + a KitKat pouch (about $18).

Both eye shadow palettes feature six shades in packaging reminiscent of KitKat wrappers. The milk-chocolate version includes a matte beige, a rich matte tan, a medium brown with gold shimmer, a matte chocolate brown (of course), a shimmering gold, and a shimmering red. The strawberry-white-chocolate version, inspired by one of the many flavors exclusive to Asia, includes a matte cream, a shimmery peach, a shimmery pink, two rich browns — one matte and one shimmer — and a matte golden brown.

Allure

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD26.80 (Shopee)


Ingredient List

I don’t think this has been published yet, will update once more details are available!


Packaging: The Kitkat packaging is seriously very worth collecting, but you know what makes this even better? The fact that it actually comes in a box that’s has a Kitkat pouch AND real Kitkat chocolate!!

Texture: You can see from the swatches that the texture is a little chalky and powdery, which is actually pretty common with some of Etude House’s Play Color palettes. That being said, you may find it a bit difficult to apply this evenly on your eyelids as well, especially with the darker shades.

Colour payoff & intensity: If it looks like there are only 6 shades in my swatch photo, the lightest shade is clearly almost invisible :’) I had a pretty hard time trying to get a decent colour payoff for the lighter shades (the first 2), but found that the last 4 are actually pretty okay.

I may be slightly prejudiced, but I always had the idea that Etude House’s eyeshadow palettes are really not the best in terms of colour payoff, so this one did surprise me (pleasantly) by quite a bit.

Colour: While I can’t find the shade names online, they are briefly described as ‘a matte beige, a rich matte tan, a medium brown with gold shimmer, a matte chocolate brown (of course), a shimmering gold, and a shimmering red’.

Matte beige would be suitable for a base colour, and the rest I would use more for accents. I quite like the shimmering gold shade – you can use it to layer your eyelids, or use it to tighten your waterline. But of course, my favourite shades still have to be the brown, because brown shades are really very easy to work with for all occasions.

On the other hand, I find the red a little intimidating to work with (it’s really very red), but if you are a fan of bright & bold colours, you definitely have to check this one out!

Staying power: Nothing amazing, but nothing to be criticized also. Its staying power is pretty average. My tip is to use an eyeshadow primer if you really want this to last for a whole day, because you’ll most likely have a faded, muted eyeshadow look by the end of a long day.


Final Verdict

Did I buy this for the novelty? Yes.

Do I love the palette? Yes.

Do I regret buying this? ABSOLUTELY NOT!

(For those of you who are curious, yes, this palette does smell like chocolate.)


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮✮✮✮

[WARNING & REVIEW] Do not subscribe to No Make No Life!!!

After looking at a lot of my followed bloggers’ posts about subscription boxes, I had been itching to try them out myself as well. Unfortunately, I think a lot of them only ship within the US, or at least don’t ship to Singapore. So you imagine how excited I was when I saw an IG ad for a subscription box service called No Make No Life, that was based in Japan and could actually ship to SG.

My happiness was, unfortunately, very short-lived. Let me run through the series of unfortunate events:


STRIKE 1

I was a bit hesitant about forking so much money for a few months, so I opted for the 1 month subscription plan, which was USD35. It seemed quite decent to me at that point of time, seeing that they include a fair bit of really good Japanese and Korean beauty products:

From the NMNL website

My February box came as it should, and I was quite excited to open it up. Here are the contents:

I was like, eh, okay? Half of the box was occupied by the cotton balls, which didn’t really look that expensive. Here’s the price breakdown of the 8 products inside the Feb 2019 box (taken from NMNL’s linked website):

Skin Milk Bomb Face Mask: USD 2.97

Fascy Moisture Bomb Hand Cream: USD 6.52

Sparkling Eye Gloss in Honey Gold: USD 7.03

Tony Moly Eyebrow Pencil: USD 5.59

Colorful Cotton Balls (100 pcs): USD 8.68

Crayon Touch Me Lip Gloss in Shiny Orange: USD 2.69

Flower Puff in Pink: USD 6.14

Savon de Chocolate Soap: USD 4.24

Does this add up to USD35? Apparently it actually adds up to USD39.62, but I’ve found some lower prices for certain items on this list. I’m also a little doubtful about the cotton balls costing almost USD 9, because I found much cheaper alternatives on Google.

But this is not even the worst part!


STRIKE 2

I wanted to start using the items in my box, so on the same day, I took out the mask to use.

Now, I first noticed that the smell of the mask was a tad strange. I know that chocolate milk is one of the ingredients inside (correct me if I’m wrong), but it shouldn’t smell so… strange. And when I took out the mask, I was horrified to see that there was something that looked like MOULD on it!!

So I went to check the expiry date. I’m not sure what the format is, but according to No Make No Life, it is supposed to be YY/MM/DD, so it expires in 2020. My first instinct, however, was that it was supposed to be DD/MM/YY, meaning that it may have expired in 2013.

I don’t really know tbh. If you do, please enlighten me!

So the next thing I did was to, of course, contact No Make No Life about this. I wanted to find out if the mask really did expire, and if so, to check thoroughly if other customers are affected by the same batch of masks.

I first messaged them on 28 January 2019, via Facebook DM, as well as email. They didn’t reply me by the next day, so I proceeded to comment on one of their FB posts. They finally replied my comment, and also got around to replying my DM on the 31st. However, they also asked me details about my delivery and parcel:

“When did the box arrive and how long after arrival did you open the box? Was the box left unattended to in front of your house upon arrival or were you there to receive it directly from your local courier?”

On one hand, I understand they may have concerns about whether the delivery and stuff affected the product, but on the other hand, why would a mask (that is properly sealed, and has apparently not expired) have mould growing on it?? I’m really puzzled because I myself have shipped masks back from Korea to Singapore, and I’ve never faced this mould problem with any of my masks.

So anyway, I shot them an email on 1 Feb with the photos (of the box) and other stuff as they had requested via FB DM. However, I never heard back from them after that about this issue, not even an email saying that they are checking into this, or at least clarifying what that mould thing is. All I got were their emails about their upcoming box and blah blah, which made me quite frustrated because they seemed to have no problems sending promotional emails, yet could not even spare a minute to reply my email and let me know what was being done about the issue I raised.


STRIKE 3

The last straw came when I got an email on 7 Feb, saying that my March box is being shipped to me. Now remember, I only selected and paid for a one month subscription, so why was I receiving this email?! I surely did not want to get another box, considering that the issue from my previous box was not settled AND I did not want to pay for something that I didn’t order! I immediately emailed them back to ask, and till now (17 Feb), I still have NOT received any reply from them.

?????

I also found out that I’m not the only one facing problems with No Make No Life from their FB page:

I’m honestly very disappointed with this subscription service. I really expected something better from a Tokyo-based (and I’m assuming Japanese) company in terms of customer service & product quality.

I hope no one has to go through the same bad experiences as I did, as well as others who are still struggling to get a reply from NMNL about their missing boxes. Please don’t buy any of their subscription plans, not until they have clarified and settled all these issues.

I’ll update again if NMNL even replies me, and make any necessary edits if I have made any errors. Do share also if you have had a bad experience with No Make No Life!!

[REVIEW] Etude House Drawing Eye Brow Duo

I got this 2 years ago and totally forgot about it because I was so obsessed with shu uemura’s hard formula, but I remembered that I still have this and haven’t reviewed it so here it is!


Product Description

Pencil and Shadow type eyebrow

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 13.90


Ingredient List

I couldn’t find this because the product seems to have been pulled down from the international website, but it’s still up on the SG one. I don’t know if they stopped selling this in Korea already, let me know if you have info on this!


 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Colour: I bought this when I just dyed my hair a copper brown, so I got it in the shade Red Brown to match my hair. Unfortunately, I’ve changed my hair colour at least twice since then, and my latest one is supposed to be leaning towards ash brown, so I can’t use this anymore.

In any case, I did try to use this as much as possible back when I had copper brown hair, but I felt that it was very hard to blend the red colour in (see swatch photo) with my black eyebrows. I even bought a brow mascara to try and lighten my brow colour, but it didn’t really help much.

I do think it would have been much better if I had bought a colour that’s similar to my brows; forget whatever they say about buying an eyebrow pencil that matches your hair, it doesn’t work out as easily as you think. Buy one that matches your eyebrow hair instead.

Colour aside, I’m also not a fan of how soft this is. I mean, it’s great for blending, but not great if you want to draw your brows in strand by strand. You know, to look like you have real brows, not just a space that’s coloured in. The powder part is a bit hard to control so you might end up with too much, be careful of that as well.

Staying power: I don’t have much to say about this. You’ll definitely still have your drawn brows intact by the end of the day, provided you don’t purposely rub them off.


Final Verdict

I quite like Etude House’s makeup products but… this is just not up my alley, especially since I’m no pro at drawing brows and need something that is foolproof.

That being said, you can definitely work the softness to your advantage by doing a soft colour and blend for more nuanced brows. I just think that there are probably better, cheaper options for doing this.


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮