Parlo Cosmetics : Tinted Lip Balms in Bordeaux, Cranbaby, and Strut

It took a lot out of me not to title this as Disappointing Products #1: Parlo Cosmetics Tinted Lip Balms. I really hate having a complete miss with indie products because they’re associated with an actual person rather than a corporation. I have no problem saying, “OH HEY. This NARS product sucked” but it’s a little harder to say that about an indie product. Unfortunately, I feel like this was just really, really disappointing.

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For Black Friday, Parlo Cosmetics offered a discount on their products. Since I’ve bought some of their eyeshadows and was pretty okay with those, I jumped on it so I could try their tinted lip balms (I swear I bought so many lip products this Black Friday). I ordered three of them: Bordeaux, Cranbaby, and Strut. Now, I know that I love a pigmented lip, but sometimes it’s nice to have a tinted balm for the lighter days. I tried to vary the scents, two in Summer Honey and one in Grapefruit.

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Beauteque BB Bag – January 2015

I saw an advertisement for a new Asian beauty subscription bag, and as you guys know, I’ve been getting into Asian beauty. I’m a little too overwhelmed with all the selections to know where to start, which is why I really like getting subscription bags or Memeboxes.

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Beauteque has sent out bags before, just not as a monthly sub, and those have seemed pretty nice and worth the price. So I decided to sign up. It’s a $24 bag, and you pay $3.95 for shipping. In the first week of the month, we got an email asking us to choose our preferences for certain products. We got to choose the color of the mask, the scent of the hair spray, and the shade of the bronzer/blush duo. They rebill on the 15th of the month which I wasn’t expecting since I hadn’t heard anything about my January subscription being shipped. I think it’s important to send out tracking numbers if they’re available (and when I got my package there was a tracking number on it). I also think that they shouldn’t be rebilling before the product has been shipped. Anyways! Onto the subscription!

Everything came in a big gold bag which smells like moth balls. Ipsy had this problem with the bags smelling pretty awful when they first started, so I’m hoping that this is a quirk that will get worked out.

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Beauty Beyond Borders (3B) Review – January 2015

Welcome to month 2 of this new subscription box – Beauty Beyond Borders, or 3B. 3B focuses on sending out Asian products, which I really like since I’m starting to get into Korean makeup and skincare.

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3B is a $12 a month subscription where you get deluxe sized samples of Asian beauty products. It includes makeup, skincare, and random bath and body products (like lotions!).

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Hello Waffle Visage – January 2015

It’s subscription box time! I’m working on getting this out on time because I’m expecting two more indie subscriptions this month and I don’t want to get too overwhelmed and see a January review in February. The first one that came this month was Hello Waffle’s Visage.

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This month has a theme of Momotaro. Can I remind you of how beautiful the packaging is?

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One thing that caused a bit of controversy was the fact that Victorian Disco Cosmetics was included. While I don’t consider myself a Victorian Disco customer any more after plenty of issues with the company, and I probably won’t use the product, I decided to include it in my review. Christine allowed Visage subscribers to opt out of receiving a VDC gloss, but there wasn’t going to be an alternate product going out. I kept the VDC gloss because I wanted to include it in my review, but I’ll probably destash it later since that’s what I’ve done with all of my VDC products.

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I had never read the story of Momotaro, which makes me appreciate Christine’s inclusion of the stories that inspire the box.

As a reminder of how Hello Waffle’s Visage works, for $25 a month, you get a box of products from Hello Waffle and a guest indie which will allow you to do an entire look from it. That means you’ll be getting blush, eyeshadow, and a lip product. I honestly really like this way of doing a subscription box because it means that everything will be cohesive the entire time. I hate getting boxes that don’t make sense together, so it’s great to see a box which conscientiously strives to be cohesive.

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Memebox : Thanksgiving Box #1 For Me

It’s been a little over a month since I’ve reviewed a Memebox, so I suppose it’s about that time again. I have a bunch of products that I’m planning on reviewing that I’ve either gotten in boxes and wasn’t ready to review yet or makeup from their USA shop, so I’m sure there are going to be quite a few Asian beauty reviews coming up. Anyways, Memebox was kind enough to send me their Thanksgiving Box #1 For Me right before Christmas, and I haven’t had the opportunity to really play with the products until recently.

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This box sold for $26 and contains 7 products. It’s sold out, but you can still buy the products (and I just got an email saying it was going to come back in stock next week) so I’m going to go through with reviewing and unboxing.

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Kae Q – Beso Balms in Lychee, Mulberry, and Passionfruit

Kae Q is one of those brands that I’ve seen around the Indiemakeupandmore subreddit for a few months now, and I’ve been curious about them. I had never decided to actually buy anything because I experience lip product overload pretty easily, and Black Friday definitely pushed me into overload. However, in December, Nicole (the owner) offered a blogger discount to active bloggers and I decided to take her up on that offer.

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I picked up three of the Beso Balms – tinted lip balms – in shades that I hoped to love. I got Lychee, Mulberry, and Passionfruit, hitting most of the color families that I gravitate towards.

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Tom Ford : Nude Dip + Dupes

Welp, first up on the products I should have reviewed a really long time ago is Tom Ford’s Nude Dip eye shadow quad. I missed the first round of its release, and I was lucky enough to snag one when a Saks Fifth Avenue email went out. I’ve used this a few times since I got it in late September, and I really hate the picture I took of it then, so I’m sorry that you’re getting product photos of a quad that’s seen some love.

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Notoriously Morbid’s Vanishing Cabinet – December 2014 – Merry Monsters

Oh man, sorry everyone. I got overwhelmed by all the happenings in December that this month completely slipped by me. I got my Notoriously Morbid order a few days before I left for Christmas, and I was able to photograph it but not swatch it. I wound up finally being able to swatch it. Usually they put up extra stock, but since they’re closed for the holidays, I’m sure the extra stock will come out some time this month.

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December’s Vanishing Cabinet had a theme called Merry Monsters – basically Carrie and Laura picked a bunch of horror movies, took the villains, and created eyeshadows based on those characters. I’m not a huge horror movie watcher, so I think I understood three of these references. As a reminder of how the Vanishing Cabinet works, for $12.90 each month, you get between 4 and 5 mini eyeshadows, along with various extras. Those extras can include lipglosses, balms, or blushes. Usually you also get a random extra from another company, but this month that was skipped in lieu for two extra Notoriously Morbid products.

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Project 10 Pan – Intro

Okay! So one of my 2015 resolutions was to participate in a project pan, and I’ve been working on picking out my items.

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I’ve finally chosen my items, so the beginning of Project Pan has started! The reason I’m doing this is because I do think that as a beauty blogger, it’s really easy to start obtaining way too many products in a really short time period. All of the things above were purchased within the time my blog started. I’ve already started to make a point of using the products I’ve picked out – hopefully I won’t get tired of using them! I already know that when I run out of one of those lip products, I’m going to pick up a darker color because I love love dark lips, but for some reason I chose not to include one in this first round. Anyways, descriptions and usage is next!

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1. NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien
Amount left: 60%
I absolutely love this color. It’s one of my favorite NARS pencils, and I’m definitely excited that Sephora’s birthday gift includes a mini of this. Because I’m about to get a double, I want to finish this by April. I probably should have put an unsharpened NARS pencil for scale, but I think I’ve sharpened this pencil two or three times.

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2. Bite Beauty High Pigment Lip Pencil in Rhubarb – Mini
Amount left: 95%
This is one of those products that Bite pushes on everyone and puts in everything. I like it as a neutral color, and I’m hoping to get through this within a few months because of how often it pops up in sets.

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3. Rouge Bunny Rouge Original Skin Blush in Delicata
Amount left: 80%
This is my favorite blush ever. I absolutely love it, and it kind of pains me to be adding a favorite into my project pan. NARS Douceur is pretty much the same shade, and I’ve asked Christine from Hello Waffle to make me a custom dupe of it. Hopefully she’ll get it really close, and I’ll be able to only pay her price instead of the high end price. You can find my review of it here.

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4. Tarte Colored Clay CC Under Eye Corrector in Light/Medium
Amount left: 50%
This has become one of my daily products, and I’ve already hit pan on it. I’d like to finish it up, and I have another product that I’m going to use when this one runs out.

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5. NARS Light Reflecting Loose Translucent Powder
Amount left: 30%
I’m actually pretty impressed that I am running out of this. I have so many loose setting powders that I’d like to go through, and I’m really focused on using one at a time. I bought this a really long time ago, so ont he plus side, it lasts over a year. When I run out of this one, it probably will get replaced with another loose powder, but I don’t expect to finish two in 2015.

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6. Dior Diorskin Nude BB Cream in 01 Light
Amount left: 30-40% maybe? It’s hard to tell with the packaging.
This foundation is a pretty good match for me, just a slight bit too pink. I’m definitely a person with more than one foundation or base product, so I’d like to get through a few of those this year.

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7. Guerlain Meteorites Pearls
Amount left: 80%
I’m actually guessing how much is left – I’ve had it for about a year and I’ve hardly made a dent. I haven’t used it daily, but I love Guerlain’s products because they smell so fancy! While I’ll be sad when it runs out, I’m pretty sure that I bought it for the packaging which I’ll try to avoid doing this year. Plus I have a few Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders that I can use as replacements for this (and Fyrinnae’s Hollywood Sorcery).

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8. Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Liner Pencil in Brown(out) – Mini
Amount Left: 100%
I’ve been sitting on this eye liner since it was a points reward. I’m not a huge fan of Marc Jacobs’ eyeliners, or his makeup line, really, so I think it’s one of those products I probably shouldn’t have gotten as a reward. I’ve already seen the bullet fall out, so I think it’s about time to start using it up.

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9. Buxom Full On Lipstick in Acapulco – Mini
Amount left: 90%
This came in the Sephora Give Me More Lip set for 2014. I actually really like this lipstick. It’s a bit minty which I’m not a fan of, which I think is part of Buxom’s attempt to add lip plumping products in everything. It’s not a huge amount of product – I think the Bite mini has about the same – so hopefully it won’t take too long to finish. When this is complete, I’m planning on replacing it with a lip gloss.

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10. MAC Eyeshadow Refill Pan in Brule
Amount left: 60%
I think it’s slightly cheating to choose an eyeshadow that I use as a base and blending shade, but considering I’ve never completely finished an eyeshadow I’d like to try it with this product. I know that I’ll use it, I can’t get tired of it, and when I run out I have an Inglot replacement that I’ll be able to use.

Wish me luck! Hopefully this won’t be too hard to stick to – and hopefully I’ll be able to double my items by the end of 2015.

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Happy 2015!! Beauty Resolutions for 2015

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you enjoyed last night with someone close to you, and if not, I hope you at least had some fun. Last year I set out some beauty goals that I failed miserably at, so I think I’m going to try to do a little more detail in what I want to achieve.

First things first, I need to low buy. My rules for that low buy are going to be as follows:

  • I get to do a French-style Wardrobe for my luxury and midrange products. A lot of blogs say that’s five things each season, but I’m limiting myself to three, especially since I’m including luxury products. I don’t really want to buy any more lipstick, since I think I’m starting to get way too overloaded, so it’ll probably focus on blush and eyeshadows unless there’s a really standout new release.
  • Shiro Color of the Months will still be purchased at the beginning of the month. I usually pick up the two limited Detrivore shades as well, so I’m going to cap my Shiro/Detrivore spending at $20 each month. That would let me get 3 products and up to two samples of any new releases. This does not roll over month to month.
  • Hello Waffle has a special place in my heart and new releases will be excluded from low buy rules.
  • My Pretty Zombie new releases will be excluded from my low buy rules.
  • I definitely don’t need any more base products. Just because I finish one doesn’t mean I need a new one, particularly because I already have a backup sitting in my stash.

I want to work on getting things finished off, so I’m going to start both a Project Pan and Use It Or Lose It. Project Pan is going to focus on 10 items that I’m going to hopefully finish by June. I’m still trying to figure out what those products are but hopefully I’ll have something up by the 15th of this month regarding it. I dead a lot of The Project Pan Gal this year, and hopefully I’ll get through products as well as she did.

  • I’ve already picked out two lip products that I want to finish: NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien and Bite Beauty’s Lip Crayon in Rhubarb.
  • I’ve also already picked out an eyeliner I’d like to finish: Marc Jacobs’ Highliner Gel Eye Crayon in Brown(Out) which I got with Sephora rewards.
  • I want to work on getting through the Guerlain Meteorites balls. I’m going to try to use it daily, but I doubt I’d be able to finish it in 6 months considering I’ve had it for a year and hardly notice a huge difference in the amount of product left.

The Use It Or Lose It will also occur monthly. I’m going to pick out 5 samples, deluxe or otherwise that I’m working on finishing. If I use it and like it but don’t finish it in the month, it’s going to carry over into the next month in order to reduce wasted product. If I don’t particularly like it, it’s going to get tossed out. I see a future filled with eye creams…

I want to do more posts like the Testing Everything series that I haven’t done too many of. I have a few more posts that I’m working on but haven’t had the opportunity to either make a look or swatch, so I need to start focusing. I’d also like to not limit myself to using one brand while doing these, but I haven’t decided how easy that might be since I love just using one palette and forcing myself to make color combinations with them.

Another big one on my list is to review everything. I hardly ever do foundation posts because I think before/afters are a little more difficult to do. I’m going to devote one sunny Saturday a month to taking photos for foundation, so hopefully I’ll be able to talk about that more. On those days I’ll also be doing my mascara posts since I’m disappointed to say those tapered off. I’m going to apologize in advance for reviewing things you can no longer get (coughTomFordNudeDipcough) but it’ll make me feel like I’m getting more done.

Eventually I’d like to start doing comparison posts between shadows, maybe finding dupes of things I have in my collection. I’m pretty sure I can already do that with fuchsia and burgundy lipsticks, so I might just be doing big swatch posts with them.

Phew. If you’ve made it this far, thanks so much for reading everything. I feel like I have a lot of things I want to get done in 2015 – hopefully I’ll be able to achieve them all! Do you have any beauty resolutions? Anything you’re hoping to accomplish in this new year?

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