Friday, February 24, 2012

Tarte The Miracle of Maracuja TSV - Shipment 1

The Tarte TSV set that I ordered from QVC last week came in yesterday, and I could barely wait to test everything out. For those who missed my previous post about TSVs, you can find it here.

Flyer included with kit. Looks much better than the picture I took of everything. :-)

This new set is supposed to air on QVC on March 16th. According to Musings of a Muse, this set is only available for preorder if  you are a QVC Insider, but as far as I know, I'm not one. It looks like if you got to and search for the item number (A225240), you'll be able to order it. It is selling for $59.96, and will remain that price through March 16. After that, it looks like the price will go up to $72.50.

One thing that doesn't come in this kit that usually comes in other Tarte kits is a makeup bag. I'm actually happy about that because I have too many makeup bags as it is.

Here's what you do get:

Cashmere Waterproof Eyeliner in black 0.01 oz

I will be curious to see the show on this TSV set because I want to see what the claims are for this eye liner (aside from the waterproof claim). I need to do more testing with it, but it seemed to smudge a bit under my eyes when I wore it yesterday. I'm also disappointed that mine seems to be defective. It is really slow to twist up, and it won't twist back down. I asked if anyone else had a problem with this on Tarte's Facebook page, and one other person responded that she had the same problem. She had contacted QVC about it, and the entire set would have to be exchanged in order to get the defective product replaced. I've thought about contacting Tarte directly, but I haven't decided if it is worth it or not.

Maracuja Divine Shine Lip Gloss in Peaceful (nude pink)0.12 fl oz

 The packaging on this gloss is adorable. I love the flowers. I don't, however, love the click-pen style gloss packaging; I would prefer a wand gloss or a squeeze tube. I also don't like how large the packaging is. I can't keep it in my pocket, and I would feel a little silly pulling this out for a touch-up in front of other people because it is such a gigantic tube.

The gloss itself feels nice the couple of times I've put it on, and it isn't overly sticky. It has a mild minty flavor that isn't overwhelming. The color is really sheer (swatch coming up later in the post). I haven't paid attention to how long it lasts on my lips, so I can't report on that yet.

Envoke the Smoke Eyeshadow Quad (pink cloud, silver mist, purple fog, dark ash) 0.2 oz

From top to bottom: Pink Cloud, Silver Mist, Purple Fog, Dark Ash

Just like the lip gloss, I think Tarte did a really nice job with the packaging on this. The box just makes me smile.

Eye shadows is one area where Tarte tends to struggle, and these seem to follow that trend. These are not overly pigmented. If you really want these colors to pop, I would suggest using something like NYX jumbo pencil in milk underneath them.

I'm going to keep playing with these, and I know I'll use them, but they won't become my favorite shadows. The colors in this kit aren't ones that I would reach for regularly anyway, so I'm hoping for a neutral palette in one of the other shipments.

Maracuja Concealer in choice of fair, light, medium, tan, deep .28 oz.

 I have this in the color fair, and I did a short review of it here.

The reason I'm showing you two tubes in this picture is because the concealer in this set is a bit smaller in size than the ones in the Glow Your Way to Gorgeous sets from last year. The battered looking tube on the left is my old tube, and the one on the right is the new one. The old tube has 12g of product, and the new one has 8g. I have no problems with the decrease in size. These sets are such an incredible value, that I don't see that small of a change as a big deal. Besides, I have had my original tube and used it regularly since July, and there is still a ton left. 

Lights, Cameras, Lashes Mascara .24 fl oz

I reviewed this product here as well. I wish they had included their new Gifted Mascara instead since they throw Lights, Cameras, Lashes in with everything.

Air Bouncy Blush in Shimmering Poppy 0.19 oz

I think this is the product that really prompted me to get this kit. I love Tarte cheek products, so I was really interested in trying a new one. This is another product that I'm curious to see them talk about on the show. 

This is a really nice cream blush, but I'm not sure why they refer to it as "bouncy." It doesn't have the spongy feeling of the Maybelline Dream Bouncy blushes. I've used it twice so far, and I like it a lot. The texture isn't the slightest bit tacky (like the cheek stains are). It blends like a dream, and it lasts well throughout the day. I'm looking forward to getting the other two of these in the upcoming sets.

Blush brush

I was really excited when I realized that this was a duo-fiber brush. I used duo-fiber brushes to apply my blush all the time, so this is really handy, and it is the only one I have with a domed shape. I've washed this and used it twice, and I had about 2-3 of the black hairs shed, but I don't expect shedding to be an on-going issue. The handle is a really nice length. It is shorter than most standard face brushes, but it is still long enough to fit comfortably in my hand. 

Pure Maracuja Oil 1.7 fl.oz

 In hindsight, I should have taken this picture with something else in it to show scale. This bottle is HUGE. It is 1.7 oz, and if you consider most liquid foundations around 1 oz, it'll give you an idea how big this bottle is.

I started using a mini bottle of this that I already had since I knew I would be getting a full size. I apply a few drops to my face right after I shower while my face is still damp. Later, I go back and do the rest of my night skincare routine (eye cream, zit cream, moisturizer). This might seem like an odd order, but I don't want to wet my face down to apply this after I have applied benzoyl peroxide to my face. I haven't noticed any major changes in my skin so far, but it hasn't broken me out, which is a positive. I'll probably try this on my hair at some point too since this will take me forever to get through if I only ever use a few drops every day.


Pink Cloud, Silver Mist, Purple Fog, Dark Ash

Peaceful lip gloss, Shimmering Poppy blush, Black liner

Bonus items:

There were two bonus items included with this set: a mini Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay eye base and a mini Brazilliance skin rejuvenating maracuja self tanner. I know the eye primer has been available before (even though I don't see it available anywhere at the moment), but the Brazilliance is a brand new, unreleased product. I haven't tried either of these yet.

Final Thoughts

Right now, the standout products for me in this set are the blush and the blush brush. Like other Tarte kits on QVC, it is a great way to try a bunch of Tarte products for a really good price.

What do you think of this set? Will you be picking it up?

Saturday, February 18, 2012

New Tarte TSV Information!

Earlier this week, I saw a post on Musings of a Muse about the new Tarte Today's Special Value that is coming up on QVC. Her post on it can be found here.

Here's what is included in the set:

Cashmere Waterproof Eyeliner in black 0.01 oz
Maracuja Divine Shine Lip Gloss in Peaceful (nude pink)0.12 fl oz
Envoke the Smoke Eyeshadow Quad (pink cloud, silver mist, purple fog, dark ash) 0.2 oz
Maracuja Concealer in choice of fair,light,medium,tan,deep .28 oz.
Lights, Cameras, Lashes Mascara .24 fl oz
Air Bouncy Blush in Amused(shimmering poppy) 0.19 oz
blush brush
Pure Maracuja Oil 1.7 fl.oz

There are a couple of things I would change about this set. I wish it didn't have the concealer again. I've already got two tubes that will last me forever.  I also don't need any more Tarte mascaras.

Even with the things that I would change, the set as a whole is a great value. The price is $59.96 (not including shipping) if you pick it up on or before March 16. Let's look at a breakdown of what the individual items would cost (a few of these I'm making a guess on because they aren't being sold individually at this time):

Cashmere Waterproof Eyeliner in black 0.01 oz - $18
Maracuja Divine Shine Lip Gloss in Peaceful (nude pink)0.12 fl oz - $21
Envoke the Smoke Eyeshadow Quad (pink cloud, silver mist, purple fog, dark ash) 0.2 oz - $22
Maracuja Concealer in choice of fair,light,medium,tan,deep .28 oz. - $15 (This is about 2/3 of the size of the concealers sent in the Glow Your Way to Gorgeous
Lights, Cameras, Lashes Mascara .24 fl oz - $19
Air Bouncy Blush in Amused(shimmering poppy) 0.19 oz - $25
blush brush - $20
Pure Maracuja Oil 1.7 fl.oz - $46

That's $186 of product for around $70 when you add in shipping and tax.

There is an auto-delivery option on this set as well with new sets shipping in July and November. I'm eagerly awaiting seeing what the other deliveries will look like.

I've already ordered mine, and it shipped today, so I'll hopefully have a post of it with swatches within the week.

What do you think? Will you be picking this one up?

Prize from Jennifae's Beauty Blog Giveaway

I was the lucky winner of the January giveaway on Jennifae's Beauty Blog, and I received my prize last weekend. If you haven't checked out Jennifae's blog, please do. She does great swatches and reviews everything from indie makeup brands to high end items.

My prize was six full-sized blushes from Everyday Minerals.

Here's a picture:

I am most excited about the full size of Jump Rope. It is a color that I became interested in right around the time that EDM stopped selling it. I was able to get a 5g jar of it in a swap a while back, but I'm happy that I now have a full size to use.

Three of the colors I received are brand new to me: Theme Park, Opening Day, and Corner Office. I'm looking forward to trying those out.

I already own full sizes of New Shoes and Wake Up Call, so I haven't decided what to do with those two yet.

Thanks Jennifae for such a nice giveaway!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Finished Products!!!

I initially planned on waiting until the end February to do this post when I started collecting finished products around the middle of January. Well...The empty stuff has piled up to a point that it is irritating me, so I'm going to go ahead and do this early. In the future, I'll probably continue to post when the empties start piling up instead of posting on a regular schedule.

Here's a shot of everything in a basket:

Breakdown of the items that I've finished:

Burt's Bees Radiance Exfoliating Body Bar - I'm pretty sure I got this as part of a value kit of minis that was on clearance a while back. It lathered nicely, and I like how my skin felt after my shower. Since I tend to prefer body washes, I don't think I will be repurchasing this item.

Olay Ultra Moisture Body Wash with Shea Butter - I got this in a clearance value set from Wal-Mart after Christmas (can you tell I'm big on sale items?). This was a decent body wash, but it didn't really feel any more moisturizing than others that I have, and there wasn't much scent to it. Since would prefer something with more scent, I don't plan on repurchasing.

Bath & Body Works Triple Moisture Shower Cream in Midnight Pomegranate - Another sale item, I believe from B&BW's summer clearance sale. I liked this. I like the scent. The thing that I DIDN'T like was the packaging. As you can see from the picture above, the metallic paint on it started to flake off as I tried to get the last of the product out. Improved packaging and another good sale might induce me to buy more of these.

 Cosmedicine Healthy Cleanse Foaming Cleanser & Toner in One - Yet another clearance item. This one came from Walgreens back in September. This did a decent job of cleansing, but I don't think it did any better than my Silk Nautrals Kiss Foaming Cleanser, and I believe it is much more expensive at full price. I don't plan on repurchasing.

Silk Naturals Firming Moisturizer - A sweet woman on the Silk Naturals forum offered this up as a freebie to someone because it didn't work for her. I didn't notice any amazing results, and I'm liking the Neutrogena night moisturizer that I currently have with retinol in it, so I don't plan in purchasing this.

Burt's Bees Milk & Honey body lotion - This came from the same or a similar clearance value kit as the bar soap. I liked the smell, but the texture had gone off slightly. I had to shake it up before using it and once had to push clumps down from the neck of the bottle. I might repurchase in the future, but not before I make a major dent in my current stash of lotions.

Pink Bow Bath Boutique Silky Skin Souffle in Pink Sugared Buttercream Puff - I won this in a giveaway done by LipGlossFiend back in the fall. I don't remember if it still had a whipped texture when I got it, but by the time I got around to really using it, it was liquidy instead of whipped. I also, sadly, spilled most of this when I was trying to clean off the threads around the jar because the lid wasn't going on right.

Burt's Bees Almond Milk Beeswax Hand Creme - Another item from the clearance value kits. I think the texture on this had gone off slightly as well. It was better after I gave the jar a good stir with a toothpick. This was super thick, and if I used too much, it left my hands feeling tacky for way too long. I probably won't repurchase any time soon, but I might eventually try it again to see if a fresher jar works better.

Yes, I'm including these mini samples. These sorts of things clutter up my makeup area, so I still consider it a positive thing when I finally use them.

L'Oreal Magic Lumi Primer - I have oily skin, so I don't really need a luminizing primer. It felt nice though.

Silk Naturals Damsel sample - This was a pretty pink. I have too many lip products that I barely use though, so I don't plan on purchasing this one. It's better for me to work on the ones I have.

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream - I got this sample when I ordered their Essential Petit BB Cream on Ebay. The color on this one wasn't bad. I don't know how this formula is different from the Essential one. It might be worth looking into though.

Infusium23 Moisture Replenisher - This was a sample that wasn't very effective because of the sample packaging. This was like water, so trying to put some on my hands and get it to my hair was challenging. I would assume a full size of this comes in a spray bottle. I don't really feel the need to look into it though.

Pore Clearing Fruit Smoothie mask - I got two uses out of this packet. It smelled good, and I liked how it felt on my skin. These sorts of packets are probably good options for me when I get caught up on my skincare stash because it takes me so long to get through a full size of a face mask product.

Korres Antiaging Primer - I had high hopes for this, but it broke me out. There's technically a little bit left in the sample pod (on the other side of the card), but I'm not putting it on my face again.

Essence of Beauty Buttercream Cupcake lip gloss - you can see, the label is gone, so I'm guessing the on flavor a bit. It is some sort of cake scent. This was just a clear gloss that wasn't anything overly special.

Badger Balm Tangerine Breeze lip balm - This is a really nice balm. It would be even better if it had an SPF. I have a couple of other flavors of this in my stash that I will enjoy using, and I will likely purchase more of these in the future.

Kiss My Face Vanilla Honey lip balm - This balm has an SPF 15, which is great. This balm has a thicker consistency than others in my collection, which feels really good sometimes, and other times it feels goopy. I have a couple more of these in my stash (I am a lip balm addict). Especially because of the SPF, I can see myself replacing these when they are gone.

Avon Glazewear Shine lip gloss in Iced Pink - This was an easy-to-wear shade. I could apply it without a mirror. The gloss felt smooth and wasn't sticky. I would be interested in trying more of this formula in the future.

Tarte Park Avenue Princess Bronzer mini - I'm doing a minor cheat here. I actually have about 2-3 days left of this product, but I scraped what was left of it into a jar a few weeks ago. I use this every day I wear makeup, so it should be gone within the week, and I'd like to get rid of this container now instead of hanging on to it for my next post on finished products. This is a decent bronzer for lighter skin tones. I would prefer something matte, but the shimmer in this isn't overwhelmingly obvious. I have another mini of this that I'll probably use, but I don't plan on purchasing this myself (both of my minis came in value sets that I purchased).

I have never actually finished a mascara. However, these are ones that I'm tossing, so I figured I would include them in this post.

Tarte Lights, Cameras, Lashes mascara - I've mentioned on here more than once that I don't care for this mascara. This tube was my last shot at liking it. Sadly, I have multiple tubes of this in my stash because they keep coming in Tarte sets that I buy. If you like this mascara, keep an eye out for future giveaways here because you'll probably see those tubes there.

Flirt! Big Flirt Thickening mascara - This mascara was a little bit clumpy, but recently it has started to get worse. Since I have quite a few backup mascaras in my stash, I figured it was time for this one to go.

Wet & Wild Mega Protein mascara - This mascara has a really wet formula. I probably ended up with mascara on my browbone every time I applied it. I don't think it did much in terms of lengthening or volume, and I didn't use it enough to know if it would have helped my lashes grow.

Are you working on finishing up any products? If you do these sorts of posts, feel free to link to them in the comments. I love reading these types of posts because they motivate me to try and work through my stash.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tarte Glow Your Way to Gorgeous Shipment 3 - First Impressions/Review

My third shipment from the Glow Your Way to Gorgeous Auto-Delivery plan from QVC arrived in the mail today, and like the good beauty blogger I'm trying to be, I patiently waited until I could take pictures before swatching anything.

If you aren't familiar with QVC, they have what they call their TSV, Today's Special Value. Quite often with beauty brands like Tarte, the TSV includes an auto-delivery option where you can opt to get three shipments that include different colors in the same product types. The unfortunate thing is that if you miss the original set, you can't sign up for the second or third (unless they have extras that they put up for sale later, which I have seen with a few sets). For example, the original Glow Your Way to Gorgeous set was available at the beginning of July. The second shipment went out in October, and the third was just sent.

I know that it might sound a bit contradictory to list this blog post as both a first impressions and a review post, but since I've had these types of products for 6+ months, I feel comfortable offering my opinions on them.

Each set came with a different makeup bag, and here's a picture of the bag that came with this set:

If you aren't familiar with Tarte, the company's signature color is purple, so nearly any makeup bag that you get from them will be in this color. This one is a really nice-sized dump bag. I wish it was a little wider and less deep just because I think it would make it easier to find things. *shrugs* It's still a nice bag.

Maracuja creaseless concealer

Blended out
 This concealer claims to be creaseless, but it doesn't live up to that claim for me. It did okay under my eyes, but I have since stopped using it for that. Now I stick to using it to cover blemishes and other spots on my face. It does a decent job. It is a really thick consistency that spreads smoothly. I will keep using it for a long time to come since I have two tubes of it (I sold the second one to someone else), and it takes very little to cover what I need it to. However, I don't think I will repurchase when I finally run out.

Amazonian clay blush in Dazzled

If you read my 2011 Favorites posts, you'll know that the Tarte Amazonian clay 12-hour blushes made the list. The one that I was sent in this kit, Dazzled, brings my tally for these types of blushes up to nine. I like the texture of them, and they do last all day for me. Another bonus that makes me like them is the packaging. The case is the same color as the product inside, which makes it really easy to find the color I want.

I haven't tried it on my cheeks yet, but I think I'm going to enjoy Dazzled. It's a pretty berry color that isn't too purple. The shimmer in it is a really-fine multicolored sparkle that isn't overkill. It looks like the same shimmer used in Peaceful if you've gotten your hands on that one.

EmphasEYES Amazonian clay waterproof cream eyeshadow in Pink Champagne

These are really nice cream shadows. They don't dry so fast that you can't work with them and blend them out, but when they do set, they don't budge.

Bonus picture of the three cream shadows I got from the Glow Your Way to Gorgeous sets:
Pink Champagne, Shimmering Taupe, Shimmering Moss

I'm excited for this particular color. It's a great, everyday color. I can see getting a lot of use out of it. After taking my swatch pictures, I compared it to a couple of other shadows in my collection. It is really similar in shade to Silk Naturals Nekkid (which is a dupe for MAC's Naked Lunch).

SmolderEYES in Brown

I was hesitant about these when I ordered the first kit because the pencil is so thick. I do have to be careful when applying them because the pencil is nice and soft, and I don't want to end up looking like a raccoon, but I can get a smudged-out liner look that works for daytime wear. Just like the cream shadow, the liner gives you some playtime to smudge it out, but it doesn't smudge once it is set.

Again, I was excited to get the color in this kit. I use brown eye liner more than I use black or grey. The brown of this isn't too warm or too cool. After some more swatching fun, I've decided that it is somewhere between Urban Decay's Whiskey and Demolition liners in terms of tone.

There was a sharpener included with each of the Glow Your Way to Gorgeous sets sent out, which is convenient. Did I need three of them? Nope, but it is nice to know they are there.

Lipsurgence natural lip luster in Obsession

This product type was another one that made my 2011 favorites list. These feel like a balm. The darker and brighter colors definitely have a punch to them, but they aren't nearly as opaque as a lipstick, and they have good lasting power.

Obsession is a great color for me. It is similar to my own lip color, which is quite pigmented, and it has a subtle shimmer to it. This will be a color that will be easy for me to grab-and-go with.

Lights, Cameras, Lashes mascara

I've mentioned in another post that I just don't like this mascara. I've tried it several times, and I still don't like it. It seems to flake on me quite a bit, and it tends to give me spider-lashes.

 That being said, I know a lot of people love this mascara, so it is a nice addition to these types of sets. I understand why they include it all the time.

Powder brush

The bristles on this brush are super soft. It isn't quite as dense as a kabuki brush, but it is stiff enough that I can see it working well for me to buff in a light layer of mineral foundation to set my liquid foundation, which is my regular routine. Obviously, I'll have to wait until I wash it before I give that a try.

Double-ended eye brush

I was really excited when I saw this brush because it reminded me of my beloved eye kabuki jr. brushes. Sadly, the domed end isn't as soft as I was expecting. I'm hoping it doesn't feel prickly when I use it. The angled-liner side will be interesting to experiment with. The angle is much sharper and the width is skinnier than the other angled liner brushes that I have.


Obsession, Dazzled, Brown, Pink Champagne

Final Thoughts

All in all, these sets were a great value. Each set cost $59. The blush retails for $25, and the concealer retails for $24, so I got an extra 7 products for $10. I think in terms of the colors sent, this shipment is going to be my favorite.

I'm really glad I ordered these sets, and I'm looking forward to the next set of kits Tarte will be offering on QVC sometime in March. I have no clue what will be in them, but knowing Tarte, it'll be something good.

Do you like Tarte? Will you be signing up for the next set of kits from QVC?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

L'Oreal Infallible Eye Shadow Review

 One of the new drugstore products that has created a lot of buzz on the internet is the L'Oreal Infallible eye shadows. I've read a lot of really good reviews on these already, so I'm going to try and keep mine short and sweet. If you want to read a more detailed review, there's a really good one here.

I've gotten all of mine at CVS. In my town, they currently retail for $8.29.

Overall, I really like these shadows, and I think L'Oreal did a good job with the color range for this collection. It has a good mix of neutral and darker/brighter shades. They last well on me when I use a primer. I haven't tried them without just because I automatically use primer as part of my routine and don't feel the need to cut that step.

So far, I own Endless Pearl, Iced Latte, Amber Rush, and Eternal Sunshine.

Swatches done with one swipe using my fingers (no primer was used):

Endless Pearl and Iced Latte

Endless Pearl and Iced Latte
Eternal Sunshine and Amber Rush
Eternal Sunshine and Amber Rush

So far, the only shade that I'm not really happy with is Endless Pearl. Every time I've tried to use it, it has looked cakey and patchy. I haven't completely given up on it yet though, so if you have any tips for me, please feel free to share.

One thing that has been a bit of a learning curve with these is what to use to apply them. The flat shader brushes that I use most of the time don't seem to want to pick up these shadows. After doing some experimenting with the other brushes that I have, it seems that fluffier brushes with tapered bristles do a better job of picking up product with these. I have also had good results applying with my fingers and with sponge tip applicators (I knew there were a reason I kept those around).

Brushes like this did not work for me (sorry they are dirty):

The brush on the left is from Lumiere Cosmetics, but it is no longer on the site. The brush on the right is from Everyday Minerals, and it can be found here.

These brushes worked:

The brush on the left is from an Eco Tools brush set that I bought at Wal-Mart. You can see the set here (it apparently isn't carried everywhere, and I can't even find it on Eco Tools website). The other two brushes are from the Studio Tools line found at Target. The one on the left is the medium shadow brush, and the one on the right is the smudge brush. Please note: They have made changes in the Studio Tools brushes, so I don't know if these newer versions work the same as the ones I have.

If you haven't checked these out yet, I would highly recommend picking one up. If you have these already, how do you apply them? What works best for you?