Friday, October 24, 2014

Tarte Chic to Cheek Deluxe Amazonian Clay blush set review + swatches

          Greetings, from The Twin Cities! I've been airport hopping as of late and thought I'd squeeze in a bit of blogging while waiting for my next flight. Today I have a sweet little blush set that reminds me of a box of macarons.  I've been enjoying this coffret of four limited edition shades from Tarte Holiday 2014, courtesy of Tarte, and have thoughts and swatches to share with you today!

         If you've been following Cute and Mundane recently, you might know that I'm a mini-kick due to my upcoming travel schedule. It's nice to have a set of high quality minis when traveling (or as space saving options in my everyday pouch).  All four shades in the Tarte Chic to Cheek set are wonderfully useable. They're packaged in similarly in sturdy color-coded plastic like the regular Tarte blushes; however, they have a pretty golden filigree designs on the lids and don't have mirrors within.

         The four limited edition shades within the Tarte Chic to Cheek set  are Amour, Classic, Prim, and Daydream. Tarte Amour is a candy pink. Tarte Classic is a soft apricot pink. Tarte Prim is a plum nude. (Side note: who else thought Hunger Games when seeing Prim?) Tarte Daydream is a mauve pink.  The formula is smooth and pigmented, as typical of Tarte blushes.

          When it comes to holiday gift sets, I tend to enjoy sets filled with great singles so that I can mix and match as needed. I really like how the Tarte Chic to Cheek set ($35) has a well rounded variety of blush shades to choose from, with pink, peach, nude, and mauve undertones. They're sized for the girl on the go, but also make nice picks for those looking to build a color collection. Color me pleased.

         Thanks for reading! Have you played with Tarte Holiday 2014? What are your favorite Tarte blushes (or products)?

Love, Dovey.

Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own. As usual, no ads or affiliate links!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

TOPSHOP Mercurial Lipstick and more... review + swatches

          It's a cool fifty degrees here in Chicago - a reminder that seasons are changing and new seasonal beauty is in order! Fall makeup tends to be tricky for me; while I subconsciously gravitate towards the rich browns and berries, they aren't the most complimentary shades to my complexion. (I'm more of a winter-spring girl). I'd been autopilot-ing with my beauty basics, until I received a lovely package filled with TOPSHOP Beauty!

          TOPSHOP's latest beauty collection is Molten Metallics - a set of metallic lipsticks and blushes for Fall 2014. It's a fall inspiration that I'm really loving for this season. Today I have look at a metallic lipstick from the collection, as well as some great TOPSHOP beauty basics.

           TOPSHOP Lips in Mercurial is one of three lip colors in the Molten Metallics collection. The silvery pink shade is a remix on your classic nude lip. The effect is a washed-out lip color with metallic glow. Admittedly you have to 'own it' to wear it; it's not a my-lips-but-better type of shade. That said, I'm loving this unique shade; it's just what I needed to spruce up my makeup routine (sans browns and berries). The finish comfortable and non-drying, though not particularly moisturizing.

Can't get enough of TOPSHOP packaging!
         I've been adding more kohls to my routine as of late; I love the dramatic smoked gradient they provide. (Usually I'll line first with a long-lasting liquid, then reapply kohl throughout the day to get add more depth to fading lines). TOPSHOP Kohl in Sable is a dark brown pencil with great intensity. It applies smoothly and has quite good lasting power for a kohl (which are usually short lived relative to other liners). I'm very happy with this pencil; it's a worthwhile addition to my everyday makeup pouch.

Inside are a little spoolie, tweezers, and brush!
          I have a thing for brow kits. (You should have seen the gleam in my eye when I spotted the TOPSHOP Brow Palette in Whatever). As someone with thinner brows, it makes a big difference when I take the time to do and touch up brows throughout the day. The TOPSHOP Brow Palette in Whatever is a conveniently sized case with a pull-out drawer of three mini brow tools (a spoolie, a tweezer, and dual ended brush. Inside, is a warm creamy brown wax and a grey-taupe shadow. They're meant to be layered for effect, but I tend to use more of the powder shadow. The brow kit is also available in a lighter set of shades.

          I adore the pretty dotted packaging of TOPSHOP Cream Blush in Afternoon. The bright pink is not a shade I would have initially picked for myself. However, I've found that just a couple dabs of the creamy formula blends out to create a surprisingly subtle brightening effect on my cheeks. It pairs nicely with Mercurial (above), as I find that I have to add more cheek color to balance out paler lips. TOPSHOP Lip Paint in Hibiscus is a rich opaque, creamy lip color. It wears comfortably, and is a nice option for when I'm feeling bright.

         I have to say, I'm loving my first trial with TOPSHOP Beauty. My favorites from this selection are TOPSHOP Lips in Mercurial, Kohl in Sable, and Cream Blush in Afternoon Tea. (I've already tucked them into my everyday makeup pouch!) I'm thinking a visit to the TOPSHOP boutique on Michigan Ave may be in order; the new metallic blushes are calling my name...

Thanks for reading! Have you tried TOPSHOP Beauty? What are your favorite products and shades?

Love, Dovey.

Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own. As usual, no ads or affiliate links!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Essie Minimalistic nail polish review + swatches

         If you need your daily dose of pink, this pink polish post is for you! When it comes to staple shades like pink, I tend to collect a number of nuances. After all polish preferences such as shade, shimmer, and sheerness change depending on the season.  Around this time of year, I shed the sheers and reach for opaque cremes, a la Essie Minimalistic.

Essie Minimalistic nail polish
       Essie Minimalistic is an opaque pale pink creme. It has a clean feel with neutral to cool undertones. Usually two coats is sufficient for full effect.

My collection of light pink Essie polishes! (I'll try to do a post with my Essie pink sheers someday...)
          I've compared Essie Minimalistic to opaque pink Essie creme polishes in my collection. Essie French Affair is darker and cooler, with lavender tones. Essie Neo Whimsical is darker and also has some lavender tones mixed in. Essie Fiji is the most similar polish to Minimalistic; that said, it is a warmer pink. Essie Not Just A Pretty Face is darker and much warmer with beige undertones.

            Essie Minimalistic is one of my favorite Essie pinks. I love how pale and  clean the color is; it doesn't have lavender, coral, or beige undertones, as many pinks often do. It's surprising how much a small change in undertone can affect overall appearance. I personally find Essie Minimalistic to be generally more wearable for me than Essie Fiji, though it's hard to tell which one's which at first glance!

          Thanks for reading! What are your favorite pink polishes? What Essie pinks do you have in your collection?

Love, Dovey.