Thursday, October 30, 2014

Goodbye to a beloved eyeliner | Elite Paris Matt Liner in Matt Brown | Swatches + Review

For some, it's mascara.  For others, it's lipstick.  For me, if there's one product I do not leave the house without, it's eyeliner.  Eyeliner.  It can be bold or subtle.  It can create a come-hither cat eye or a "I'm awake" look.  With my heavy, hooded eyelids, sparse lashes, and small eyes in general, eyeliner was a game changer for me.  With eyeliner, my eyes actually looked open and attractive in pictures.  My eyes finally stood out under my glasses.  I love eyeliner.

I first discovered eyeliner in high school.  I would always get the same one because I got lucky and the first one I purchased was a fantastic choice - Lineur Intense Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner from L'Oreal.  It met all the requirements: soft, felt tip, pigmented color, easy to apply, long-lasting, non-irritating, easy to remove.  They also lasted a really long time, especially since I was using the liner every day.

Fast forward to March 2013, when I received my third GlossyBox...

Meet Matt Brown.  He's a keeper.  He's waterproof and long-lasting.  He has a soft, felt-tip applicator that's easy to use and control.  He has a formula that dries quickly and turns into a beautiful, soft matte finish.  His deep and intense brown color complemented my eyes yet could be made to look very natural.  Seriously, this was the eyeliner that I was looking for all along.  Matt Brown was a keeper and I looked high and low to find more of his kind.  Unfortunately, he doesn't exist anymore.  That's right, discontinued.

What is a girl to do?  I had to move on. My Matt Brown was drying up.  I put two drops of Bioderma cleansing water into the liner which gave me a couple of months, but I still needed options.  One day my husband came home with an order from  By chance, he had purchased an item that was on my wish list: Eyeko Visualeyes Liquid Eyeliner in Mocha.  I was hesitant to try it, because how could it possibly be as great as Matt?  Turns out this Eyeko liner is probably the closest dupe I could ever hope to find.

Tip comparison
Left: Eyeko Visualeyes Liquid Eyeliner in Mocha
Right: Elite Paris Matt Liner in Matt Brown

So what's the difference?  Eyeko comes in a sleeker package.  It has a nearly 1 cm long, tapered brush tip.  It has twice the amount of product (0.55 mL versus 2.5mL).  The brown color has a hint of black.  It was made in in Japan and assembled in Korea (Matt was German made).  Most importantly, it's available on the market and easy to buy (, $19).  Who knew, of all people, my husband would be the one bringing home my dream eyeliner?

Above: Swatches in natural light
Left: Elite Paris Matt Liner in Matt Brown
Right: Eyeko Visualeyes Liquid Eyeliner in Mocha

Above: Swatches in direct sunlight
Left: Elite Paris Matt Liner in Matt Brown
Right: Eyeko Visualeyes Liquid Eyeliner in Mocha

Thursday, October 16, 2014

A blacktie palette for a black tie event | Dior Backstage Couture Creations Palette | Swatches

I'm traveling this weekend and that means I have to pack.  While I'm an expert at choosing outfits to bring on a trip, I have a major issue with makeup and skincare products.  It's not that I can't choose, I just end up packing way too much!  I definitely get the gene from my mom.  When I was younger, I remember settling into a hotel room after a long day of sightseeing and seeing her opening a sizeable train case full of travel-sized toners, serums, moisturizers, creams, you name it - she had it.  While it was a mini treasure chest of products right in her lap, it was quite heavy and not very practical.

Today, I want to share a more friendly way to travel with the products you love.  I took one look at this makeup palette and fell in love with the beautiful selection of face, eye, and lip products.

On the left, there is a gorgeous yet subtle golden highlighter that looks luminous on my NC-20 skin.  I use it on my cheekbones, forehead, cupid's bow, brow bone, and down the bridge of my nose.

The blush is very subtle and with my flushed cheeks, it's difficult to see.  That being said, I think it's a versatile, universal soft pink shade that will look great on most skin tones.

The eyeshadows are just delightful.  The top row of shadows are for the "day" look.  The peachy-pale pink shade highlights the inner corners, the shimmery brown is perfect for the crease.  The gold has discernible glitter particles but because it's not concentrated resulting in a subtle sparkle, perfect to emphasize the center of the lid.  I wore this eyeshadow look today and got plenty of complements!

L to R: swatches of highlighter, blush, shimmer shadows x2, "glow look" x2, "smoky look" x2, natural lighting, above

Here are the instructions that were included with the palette.

I wore the daytime look with a mixture of the two pink lip colors included in the palette.  The top color is more glossy and has a small amount of gold shimmer.  The bottom color is more matte and opaque.  I topped it off with my favorite gloss at the moment, the Chantecaille Luminous Gloss in Pink Melon, which is hydrating, long-lasting, and gives the illusion of full, plump lips.

 Swatches of Rouge Dior Nude (L) and Dior Addict Gloss (R), indirect sunlight, above
Rouge Dior Nude: "Smoky Look: enhance your look with Rouge Dior lipstick for a touch of nude color and instant radiance."
- Matte to semi-glossy pink shade
- Long lasting, medium to full pigmentation
-Natural finish
Dior Addict Gloss: "Glow Look: give you lips natural definition and shine with Dior Addict Gloss."
- Light pigmentation
- Some shimmer
- Glossy finish

Chantecaille Luminous Gloss in Pink Melon, above

I have yet to use the night-time look eyeshadows but I am definitely excited to.   I just need a special occasion to go to.   Dinner with the hubby might do!

Do you have a all-in-one makeup palette that you fell in love with at first sight?

The palette details:
- 0.25 oz Diorskin Nude Shimmer illuminating powder
- 0.20 oz Diorblush #830 powder blush
- 6 x 0.04 oz Eye shadows in Light pink base #614, Iridescent Brown Colour # 669, Mono Gold Highlighter #616, Light Grey Base #034, Purple Colour #968, Black Sparkling Liner #085
- 0.04 oz Dior Addict Gloss lip gloss
- 0.04 oz Rouge Dior Nude lipstick in Charnelle #459