Tuesday, March 29, 2016

The Best Blackout I've Ever Suffered...Tom Ford Nail Lacquer


Brimming with fine silver, along with some shots of pale turquoise and pink microshimmer, magnifying the dimension, complexity and allure of Tom Ford's blackout, I relish how the lacquer's blackened, hematite grey hue dances along the edges of looking black.


A outstanding formula that is nearly perfect in one coat. As with some of my other sparkly dark/black polishes, I was worried the finish would be gritty and look of glittery grain in tar. However, that was not the case, as Blackout has a comely, smooth cream finish (which wears for four to five days), with a brilliant "patent leather" shine. I truly heart Tom Ford's Blackout Nail Lacquer!

What are some of your favorite dark/black sparkly polishes?

Monday, March 28, 2016

Duke, Duke, Duke, Duke of Earl Grey...Tasty Related, Not Beauty Related


Earl Grey is my all-time favorite tea (with Violet a close second), and one of my preferred blends is from Fortnum & Mason.

I love reaching for the Fortnum & Mason tin caddy; its beautiful colors and printed design, enhances the enjoyment of my earl grey experience.


The loose-leaf tea has a deliciously fresh, and bold, aroma of black tea and bergamot, which makes me want to eat it raw...I'm such a savage (crunch, crunch, crunch)!


I've yet to replace my glass tea pot that broke a few weeks ago. This Kyusu (a traditional Japanese ceramic tea pot) I've had for over eight years will have to suffice. 

Depending on my mood, I like my earl grey two ways: with a slice of lemon, or with milk and (tea aficionados prepare to gasp) sugar. 



After brewing, the tea has a delightful fragrance, and an exceptionally palatable flavor of earl grey, that I'm crazy for. I wish I had those Moulin Rouge Earl Grey cookies I love so much to enjoy with my cup of tea.

The Fortnum & Mason website does ship internationally, but I usually purchase mine at Isetan Shinjuku (my home away from home) The loose-leaf caddies come in two sizes: 125g (2,160 yen) and 250g (3,240 yen), but the 250g eludes me, as it's always sold out.

What's are your favorite flavor of tea?

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Happy Easter!

May you and yours receive joy and many blessings this Easter Sunday.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only son, so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish but might have eternal life. John 3:16

-Liz

Blush, Blush, Baby Giveaway Update!


Hey guys! I've decided to add a second and third place winner to my Blush, Blush, Baby Giveaway Blush, Baby Giveaway.

All the requirements, rules, deadlines, etc, are the same; except your chance at nabbing a blushers has increased.

Your giveaway reminder:

The first place winner receives one blush of your choice from each brand: Addiction, THREE, Laduree, Suqqu, and Chicca.

The second place winner gets a blush of their choice from one of the following brands: ADDICTION, THREE or LADUREE.

 The third place winners get a blush of their choice from one of the following brands: THREE or LADUREE.

What you have to do: in the comments, please list your favorite blushers, what upcoming blushes are you pining for, and what Addiction, THREE, Laduree, Suqqu, and Chiccs blushers would you choose.  

To increase your chances of wining (same method as all my previous giveaways):

All gorgeous members (via the members section on the blog) automatically get one entry. So, don't forget to click the "Join this site" button.

For every blog post, tweet, or whatever form of social media you use, mention the giveaway, and you'll earn another two entries per mention (please link the post in the comments, thank you!).

The What Makes You Blush Giveaway ends on August 9th, 11:59p.m. (GMT+9).

This giveaway is open internationally.

If you have any questions, feel free to message me in the comments.

I'm Making A Remix


After several years of enduring my physical abuse (I.e., numerous droppings), Christine (aka, my laptop) is hanging on to dear life by promises, pleas, and prayers. Any moment now, Christine is going to spontaneously combust and die. Now, I'm in a pickle, because I need to buy a new laptop, but I have to buy it in the states ( specifically because I don't want a Japanese keyboard. Man, I dread what the shipping rates will be).


Many of last year's Holiday collection color schemes felt either "Fallish" or "Springy" to me. Hence, I thought Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune's entire collection would be perfect for the beautiful sunny, yet still chilly (today it's raining), beginnings of Spring.


I'm not sure about the rest of the world, but in Japan, the Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palettes were sold in a set (9,180 yen) that included a cute bag, a Lacquer Sparkle from the collection, and a mini Ultime8 Supreme Beauty Cleaning Oil.


I adore the lining of the bag. A beautiful colored blue fabric, with a cute mixture of western and eastern gold printed images.


I did let out an "AWWWW" when I saw this lone fella printed on the back bottom right corner of the bag.


I'm always thankful when palettes come with generous sized mirrors.


The Indigo Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palette houses four semi-metallic-pearled shadows, three translucent, glittery shadows, and a blush.


From left to right:

A blackened, navy blue with a semi-metallic-pearl finish.

A warm, brownish-leaning, dark ash grey with a semi-metallic-pearl finish.

A pale, baby blue with a semi-metallic-pearl finish.

A glittery, pale gold with a translucent base.


A shimmery, off-white with an almost translucent, semi-metallic-pearl finish.

A glittery, golden, celery green with a translucent base.

A glittery, pale, sweet pink with a translucent base.

A matte, soft coral-pink.


The images of foxes, croissants, kimonos, and dresses along the Play & Remix Drawing Pencils continues to promote the coupling of Paris and Tokyo.


These creamy, intensely pigment drawing pencils apply smoothly, and are long-lasting and smudge-proof. Actually, they're so smudge-proof, you literally have milliseconds to seconds to blend them out before they set. I found if you don't work quickly, especially with the M Indigo, you'll be left with patchy, uneven, bald-spots of bold color.


The Maison Kitsune Laque Sparklers are probably my favorite products from the collection. As the Laque Sparklers in the permanent range, the Maison Kitsune's  have a soft, floral scent. They have a
slick, slightly translucent, yet, vibrantly pigmented formula, which is lightweight, hydrating, comfortable on the lips, and wear for about four hours. With a glossy, almost "wet" finish, the Maison Kitsune Laque Sparklers are loaded with fine, gold micro-shimmer that gives the pout flashes of a gorgeous, pearlized golden sheen.


The curved, sponge-tipped wand fits the lips wonderfully, and applies the product beautifully with absolute control.


From left to right:

G Silver: a grey-based, bluish-silver with fine glitter.

M Indigo: a matte, royal blue.

Fleur Shine: a cool-toned, mauvish-bubblegum pink with fine, golden microshimmer.

Persimmon Glow: a vibrant, persimmon orange with fine, golden microshimmer.


Look Breakdown:
Face:
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer.
Nars Sheer Glow Foundation in Medium 2 (Santa Fe).
The blush from the Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Indigo Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palette.
Les Merveilleuses Laduree Shimmering Pressed Powder in 103 (dusted all over the face).
Eyes:
B & C Browlash EX Water Strong W Eyebrow in Grey Brown.
MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer in NC30.
MAC Paint Pot in Utterly Becoming (eyeshadow base).
Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Indigo Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palette:
The blackened, navy blue shadow (blended on the lid and winged out at the end).
The pale, baby blue shadow (bearly dusted on the brow bone and inner corner).
Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Play & Remix Drawing Pencil in G Silver (along the inner half of the upper lashline).
Dolce & Gabbana Passion Eyes Mascara in Blu Indaco 3.
Lips:
Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Laque Sparkler in Fleur Shine.


All of the looks on the blog, are actually looks I've worn out, and since I don't have time to take pictures of them before I head out, they're photographed whenever I come home. Regrettably, all of the full-face photos of the following look were out of focus...sorry!


Look Breakdown:
Face:
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer.
Nars Sheer Glow Foundation in Medium 2 (Santa Fe).
The blush from the Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Indigo Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palette.
Les Merveilleuses Laduree Shimmering Pressed Powder in 103 (dusted all over the face).
Eyes:
B & C Browlash EX Water Strong W Eyebrow in Grey Brown.
MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer in NC30.
MAC Paint Pot in Utterly Becoming (eyeshadow base).
Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Indigo Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palette:
The dark ash grey shadow (blended on three-fourths of the lid and crease. Also, along the lower lashline).
The blackened, navy blue shadow (on the outer V, and over the M Indigo Drawing Pencil on the upper and lower lashline).
The glittery, pale gold shadow (patted on the center of the lid).
The shimmery, off-white shadow (in the inner corner and brow bone).
Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Play & Remix Drawing Pencil in M Indigo (along the upper and lower lashline).
Dolce & Gabbana Passion Eyes Mascara in Blu Indaco 3.
Lips:
Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Laque Sparkler in Persimmon Glow.


Among all the items featured in this post, my favorites are the blackened-navy blue and dark-ash grey from the Indigo Beauty Remix Smokey Eye & Cheek Palette, and the Persimmon Glow Laque Sparkler (perfect for all seasons, and in my opinion, especially for Autumn).

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Glitz & Fizzle...Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune Indigo Glitz Party Mixer Glitz Nail Enamel


From the packaging to the products, I was totally smitten with everything from the Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune 2015 Holiday Collection.


I appreciate when brands add that extra attention to detail to their packaging. How cute are the prints along the inside of the exterior packaging?!


Wish I could have a fox for a pet. Alas, I'll have to settle with having their adorable images printed on my nail polish bottle.


Indigo Glitz is a blackened, indigo-blue with a subtle hint of purple duochrome, and loaded with blue and green shimmer. The Formula is great, applied without any issues, and is opaque after two coats. However, the finish is where I come to a crossroads; it's really odd because after a few hours of wear, even with a top coat, Indigo Glitz's finish goes dull and turns me off. Yet, there are moments when the radiant shine returns, and all is forgiven. Indigo Glitz is just playing with my emotions.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Curse Of The Almond & Golden Flower...Bath & Body Works' Creamy Almond & Sunflowers Shower Gel


For March's body wash, I chose Bath & Body Works' Creamy Almond & Sunflowers Shower Gel. In the midst of the first use, I knew I wouldn't be able to bear the scent for an entire month.

L'Occitane's Almond Shower Oil and Dr. Bronner's Almond Pure-Castile Liquid Soap are two of my favorite almond scented body washes. So, I had high hopes for Creamy Almond & Sunflowers, but the fragrance was so noxious, it gave me an instant migraine.

The scent was so off-putting, I broke from my lather to check the key notes. With the blend of Almond Milk, Sunflower Petals, Orange Blossom, and Vanilla Musk, they should have created a lovely bouquet, but not so. Creamy Almond & Sunflowers smells of Palmolive and "old lady perfume" that's turned bad.


To recover from my gagging reaction to this putrid shower gel, I replaced it with an old favorite, White Tea & Ginger, reviewed here.

If Aki's sister or mother like Creamy Almond & Sunflowers, they're more than welcomed to it. If not, into the trash it goes!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Blush, Blush, Baby Giveaway


22 weeks to the end of my Blush, Blush, Baby Giveaway.

The prizes...one blush of your choice from each brand: Addiction, THREE, Laduree, Suqqu, and Chicca.

What you have to do: in the comments, please list your favorite blushers, what upcoming blushes are you pining for, and what Addiction, THREE, Laduree, Suqqu, and Chiccs blushers would you choose.  

To increase your chances of wining (same method as all my previous giveaways):

All gorgeous members (via the members section on the blog) automatically get one entry. So, don't forget to click the "Join this site" button.

For every blog post, tweet, or whatever form of social media you use, mention the giveaway, and you'll earn another two entries per mention (please link the post in the comments, thank you!).

The What Makes You Blush Giveaway ends on August 9th, 11:59p.m. (GMT+9).

This giveaway is open internationally.

If you have any questions, feel free to message me in the comments.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Do Rush Everything!


One of my most cherished blue palettes is Tom Ford's gorgeous, and it's beyond me why it was discontinued. It wasn't until the Spring 2016 collection's release of Starry Night (which I've ordered online, but it's being babysat in the states) that the brand had a blue quad in it's permanent lineup...we'll see how long that lasts.

From left to right: 07 Cobalt Rush, 14 Sable Smoke.

Color description from left to right:

A shimmery, silvery-winter white.

A shimmery, gray-based, purple-blue.

A mid-tone, cobalt blue with a satin finish.

A deep, murky-peacock-blue with a satin finish.

A dirty-midtone-peachy-nude.

Nudes are my "go to" shade of lipsticks to pair with blue shadows (orange being second), and 14 Sable Smoke is a perfect companion to Cobalt Rush.



Look Breakdown:
Face:
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer.
Nars Sheer Glow Foundation in Medium 2 (Santa Fe).
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour Blush in Buff.
Les Merveilleuses Laduree Shimmering Pressed Powder in 103 (dusted all over the face).
Eyes:
B & C Browlash EX Water Strong W Eyebrow in Grey Brown.
MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer in NC30.
MAC Paint Pot in Utterly Becoming (eyeshadow base).
Tom Ford Cream Color For Eyes in Platinum (on the lid, blended into the crease and along the lower lashline).
Tom Ford Eye Color Quad in 07 Cobalt Rush:
The Purple-blue shimmer shadow (patted on the inner half of the lid then blended upward into the inner crease, and patted on the center of the lower lashline).
The silvery-winter white shadow (in the inner corner and brow bone).
Tom Ford Eye Defining Pencil in 06 Midnight (used to tightline and on the waterline).
Dolce & Gabbana Passion Eyes Mascara in Blu Indaco 3.
Lips:
Mac Lip Pencil in Stripdown.
Tom Ford Lip Color in 14 Sable Smoke.



Look Breakdown:
Face:
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer.
Nars Sheer Glow Foundation in Medium 2 (Santa Fe).
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour Blush in Buff.
Les Merveilleuses Laduree Shimmering Pressed Powder in 103 (dusted all over the face).
Eyes:
B & C Browlash EX Water Strong W Eyebrow in Grey Brown.
MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer in NC30.
MAC Paint Pot in Utterly Becoming (eyeshadow base).
Tom Ford Cream Color For Eyes in Platinum (along the lower lashline).
Tom Ford Eye Color Quad in 07 Cobalt Rush:
The murky-peacock-blue shadow (patted on the lid, blended upward into the inner crease and outward).
The cobalt blue shadow (Smudged over the midnight eye pencil along the upper lashline).
The silvery-winter white shadow (in the inner corner and brow bone).
Tom Ford Eye Defining Pencil in 06 Midnight (used to tightline and along the inner one-fourth of the lower waterline).
Dolce & Gabbana Passion Eyes Mascara in Blu Indaco 3.
Lips:
Mac Lip Pencil in Stripdown.
Tom Ford Lip Color in 14 Sable Smoke.


What are some of your favorite Tom Ford Blues?

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Coated In Sugar...Tom Ford 02 Toasted Sugar Nail Lacquer


I'm taking a break from the blue polishes, and dawning a "mannequin hands" shade that pairs beautifully with dark blue eye looks I've been wearing. Tom Ford's 02 Toasted Sugar is a neutral, flesh-toned-nude creme, with a hint of warmth.


When it comes to formulas, I find Tom ford's lighter nail lacquers (i.e. Show Me The Pink) to be on the problematic side, and require several coats. Yet, Toasted Sugar has that "just right" consistency, applies with ease, and is opaque after only two. Also, the wear time is great, around four to five days.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

100 Photos About 100 Blushers


For all my fellow blushaholics, here's an orgy of blush porn from UP Magazine. 













I'm dying over all these blushes (especially the Lady Red, Pure Orange, and Healthy Beige categories)! I need to go through all my blushes to see which ones I own, because I need them all in my life!!!

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