28 November 2014

Review & Swatches: Memebox Special #56 K-Style 4

I've been away for a while, partially because of a new job, and partially because I felt like the blog was an enabler for me to buy more beauty crap. (Also, I am an enabler.) So here's a pic=heavy post to make up for it.

I ordered this box with non-expedited shipping on 25 Sep; the pre-determined shipping date was 18 Nov; and it arrived today, on 28 Nov.



$37 (after shipping) for six full-sized items doesn't sound bad, but I was disappointed by a few of the products inside.

Product Impressions & Swatches

Item 1: Revecen Volumizing Mascara in some generic black

I didn't open this for photos, because this is just a quick swatch post--and black mascaras basically all look the same. No action photos either, because my lashes are short enough to make mascara application a lengthy, unvoluminous pain in the ass.

Item 2: Shara Shara Petit Friend Matte Lip Crayon in PK01 Pure Pink

I was looking forward to this product--in fact, it was the first thing I smeared all over my post-Thanksgiving fat face--but the shade I got isn't even a shade.

Looks all nice and pretty in the tube, right? Lip swatch:

As far as I could tell, all it did for my lips was give them a faint unhealthy white cast. The stain from an earlier lip product made that look pigmented in the slightest, so maybe an arm swatch would be better:

That slightly shiny spot is supposed to be multiple layers of something 1) matte, and 2) Pure Pink. Instead, I got something 1) mucus-resembling, and 2) useless.
Since it's almost moisturising, I guess I'll be using this as a sub-par lip balm. At least it smells like nice candy.

Item 3: Shara Shara Triple Shine Color Shadow Trio in 03 Cobalt Blue

'Oh! Four options! That means I have a 75% chance of NOT getting... Cobalt Blue.'

To be fair, since this shade probably isn't the best seller, it's not unlikely that my chances were much lower.

I love eye shadows, but medium blue ones clash horribly with my warm skin tone, as I imagine it does with a lot of other girls of East Asian descent.
Sapphires and navies are okay, but as you will see below, the card's photo of darkest shade in the trio is misleading. (As is the arrangement of things in the trio--they go medium shade, then dark, then light in real life; but the order is swapped in the photo. Memebox, you had better not have sent me a knock-off.)

The face is meant to be... cute or something, I guess.

It contains a little plastic insert to protect from drool. IF IT WAS A COLOUR I ACTUALLY LIKED, anyway.

The lid shade actually isn't too bad. It's light enough that I could use it as a highlight, if I ran out of the intended highlight colour.
The darkest shade isn't actually a cobalt blue (or navy), but a medium aqua blue with white glitter. I might be able to use it as an accent in the summer.

Item 4: Revecen Face Control Foundation in 002 Violet

A possibly-gimmicky cream product. Perhaps an oversupply of purple dyes created a demand to make a demand for a novelty product with wide claims.
'RÊVECEN use the best materials':

Finger swatch and finger print:

I tried to get a swatch of a bit of it blended out on my face, but I couldn't find the spot when I went back through my photos. So I guess that goes to show what a difference it made for my skin.

My skin has a lot of redness right now, and this purple cream just made me look slightly pinker. A green product probably would've been better in my case, although no sheer layer of any colour is going to magically cancel out blemishes. Regardless of what advanced insights into colour theory are marketed to you.

Item 5: Beauty People Miss 100 Auto Gel Pencil Liner in Gleam Brown

The English on the packaging says Glam Brown, but both Memebox's card and the Korean text on the packaging say Gleam Brown. The other colour options were Glimmer Coral and Glimmer Bronze

Next to foundation, eyeliner is one of the few colour cosmetic products I use up with any regularity. I'm always happy to get a good waterproof one, and automatic pencils are even better..

Glam Brown is a dark brown with chunks of golden glitter. Kinda like a golddigger's turd.

Item 6: ideeB Real Triple Rouge in 02 Shine Pink

This was the only shade sent out. It's a wearable, sheer coral-ish pink gloss.

It's less neon than in the picture. The tone of gloss stuck to the plastic part of the wand is more accurate.

My lips were still a little stained when I took the below photos; the gloss is not as fuschia as it appears below. The colour reminds me of Nyx Butter Gloss in Peaches and Cream, but not milky.

Overall Thoughts

The products were okay in this box, but some of the shades were disappointing. Unfortunately, there's no way to customise Memeboxes. Based on the box reveals I'd seen of previous K-Style boxes, this one fell a little short; it was also disappointing compared to the Vagabond Youth collaboration box that I'd purchased previously. I think I'll be sticking to Memebox's skincare boxes next time.

06 May 2014

Review: Beauteque Asian Beauty Store

Because my skin gets dry, irritated and pimply from all-nighters I've been pulling for midterms, I've been getting into Asian skincare as of very late.

Beauteque is an online store that sells primarily Korean make-up and skincare products, as well as a few Japanese (Koji), Taiwanese (My Beauty Diary) and other (Bioderma; random manufacturer-unspecified jewellerey) items. Being US-based, their shipping prices are low to free within the US; but they ship internationally.

I found out about Beauteque from a promotional post in the Asian Beauty subreddit. They had a $2 off $13.90 promotion (ongoing as of this post) and free shipping on any purchase (no longer), so I ordered a $14.60 box of ten My Beauty Diary face masks, and one individual $2 sheet mask. Then I figured I should take advantage of the last days of the free shipping, and grabbed another box.
(Note: They seem to track customers by IP + email address, so you could easily re-use the same promo code on multiple orders. Not that I condone being a douche to small businesses.)

The relatively new company is operated out of New Jersey; I'm across the country, in California. The turnaround timeline looked like this for me:

  • Monday, 28 Apr, evening: Place order #1.
  • Tuesday, 29 Apr, afternoon: Receive two e-mails at the same time, one saying that order #1 status is now 'Completed', and the other saying that it is now 'Shipped'. Place order #2 soon after.
  • Wednesday, 30 Apr, afternoon: Receive the same two e-mails for order #2.
  • Saturday, 3 May, evening: Receive two e-mails at the same time, for both order #1 and #2, saying that order status is now 'Awaiting Fulfillment'. (These ones confused me; I wasn't sure if they were intended to have been sent.)
  • Tuesday, 6 May: Receive both packages in the mail.
This puts total turn-around time at one week. Not as fast as ordering the masks off Amazon with Prime, which generally costs about the same as Beauteque (with Beauteque being a little cheaper with use of a promo code); but definitely faster than ordering from sellers abroad.

Left: order #2; right: order #2. Even the right one contained less--just one box of masks, it came in a proportionally huge box.
Contents, with packing material shown above. Adequately packaged with bubble bags or wrap. The gilded sash bags are the samples they sent me. (They are also offering sample bags for only the shipping costs--$3 in the US--here.) I got a 10% discount code with order #2, but not #1.
Purchased items: My Beauty Diary 10-count natto masks box ($14.60), My Beauty Diary 10-count arbutin whitening masks box ($13.60), and My Beauty Diary cooling mask ($1.99).

The sample bags I got were different, aside from a couple of repeat products. You can choose the contents of their 'free' (minus shipping) sample bags, however.

Overall, I'm satisfied with my experience with them. I would definitely buy from them again with a coupon--which, since they always seem to have 10% discount codes floating around, could be a problem for me--for face masks especially. I might stick to buying from international online stores, or from brick-and-mortar Asian shops in my area, during sales for colour cosmetics and bottled products, though.

27 April 2014

EOTD: Stacked Teal Eyeliner

The drudgery of classes and interviews--and the boring, subdued makeup looks that are expected along with them--have really gotten me on a colour kick recently.

Last weekend, I pulled out a bright T-shirt, bright bandana and teal Urban Decay Flipside eyeliner.

Flipside, a bright blue-teal, has been discontinued, but Urban Decay's Deep End (in the Ocho Loco 2 set, which is now on sale) is close. Some other dupes are listed here.

Stacked liner looks are a good way to bring in colour, without getting too crazy (like with eyeshadows), and without stealing normal liner definition by completely swapping out the black/brown liner. These looks are a little better/cleaner with a liquid colour liner on top; but pencil liners, like the one I used, work fine, if you put in a little more effort.

Here's what I used:

  • Light layer of e.l.f. Studio Cream Eyeshadow in Bronzed, set/contoured with an even lighter layer of My Pretty Zombie eyeshadow in Cookie Pants. This coppery-brown lid base warms up, and adds depth and contrast to, the eye. After application, I used a blending brush until the shadow was sheer; again, I wanted it light--not for it to get in the way of the colourful eyeliners on top of and below it.
  • Black gel eyeliner, in a clean-edged thin-to-medium strip along the upper lashline, with an angled brush.
  • Urban Decay Flipside pencil eyeliner directly above this, in a clean strip of equal to lesser thickness than the black line; ending in a diagonal wing extending slightly past the tail of the black eyeliner. Because it was a pencil rather than an opaque liquid liner, I had to go over the liner several times to build intensity, and had to be careful to keep the line clean-edged and even. I went back a couple times with the black gel liner when I accidentally brought the teal down too far.
  • Urban Decay Ransom (also discontinued, but also dupeable) on the bottom lashline.
As usual, I didn't bother with mascara, though most other people would continue with that step.