Monday, April 23, 2012

Review: Anastasia See and Be Seen Kit

Guys, I am all of the busy.  I have finals for the next 2-3 weeks :(  But on the other hand, I have a pretty beauty kit to review for you guys!

So the kit comes in this cute little box, packed with tissue paper, and four products inside it.  The four products in the kit are the Brow Gel in Caramel, two Hydrafull Lip Glosses in Heiress and Plastic, and an Illumin8 Eyeshadow Duo in On Set.  It's coming out early this summer, and I don't know how much it's retailing for, but you get $86 worth of product (everything in it is full size! Yay!) and I assume it'll retail for less than that.

So from the left we have the Heiress lip gloss, then the lip gloss in Plastic, then the brow gel, then the shadow duo.  The shadow duo has a shimmery champagne shadow and a coppery gold shadow, and comes in a metal-looking plastic case that's extremely reflective (which acts as a mirror on the inside).  The duo comes with a little shadow applicator too, which is nice as far as these kinds of applicators go, but not something I'd ever use.  I'd prefer a mini-eyeliner, but that's just me.

The lip gloss has a very interesting applicator--it's like a flat plastic paddle.  I have mixed feelings.  On the one hand, I see how it could be useful in not using too much product.  On the other hand, I have a really hard time applying the lip gloss with it.  I have to be right in front of a mirror watching it or there's uneven lip gloss everywhere.  Here are the swatches: from the top, the shadow duo, the brow gel, Plastic lip gloss, and Heiress lip gloss.

 Okay!  The products:

Eyeshadow: I really love this.  The packaging is decent, it looks very polished but doesn't feel that luxurious given that it's plastic.  But the eye shadows are lovely!  They are soft, go on like butter and very opaquely, have great lasting power, no fallout and are easy to blend.  Both colors have a fine shimmer that really brightens the eye.  I really, really like them!  The champagne makes a nice inner-eye highlight color, and the copper-gold is a very pretty lid color that reminds me of MAC's Amber Lights a bit.  It does pull a bit orange on me, and makes me look a little ill without being anchored by some black liner, but it's lovely against green or blue eyes.  It's just bright enough to pop without being so bright that it looks garish or unflattering.  The shadows have a Youthful Synergy Complex that claims to hydrate and firm the skin, which sounds lovely, but I'd have to use it for a few weeks straight to see if it works or not.

Lip gloss: Heiress is a medium coral-pink and Plastic is a straight-up Barbie pink.  In terms of opacity, both of these glosses are very opaque--surprisingly so, really.  They smell lightly like vanilla, but don't have a discernible taste.  The formula is glossy, and has a nice, moisturizing feel on the lips without being heavy or greasy feeling.  The lasting power is really impressive--my gloss lasted through dinner and then some, which is pretty good for me.  My two qualms would be that it's a little on the sticky side, and that I don't like the applicator.  Given that the gloss is so opaque, I can't casually apply it on the go because the applicator is a bit unwieldy for me, and I get really uneven application without a mirror.  However, I really like the color of Heiress--applied thinly, it amps up my natural lip color nicely, and applied thickly, it's dramatic and lovely.  Plastic just doesn't work for my skin tone, but it's a cute color.  Apparently the gloss is packed full of moisturizing plant extracts that will make your lips look better, but I can't speak for that yet.  The tubes themselves are above average quality, but you don't get that much product for $21 a pop--but given how pigmented they are, they probably last a while.

Brow gel: I really like the packaging on this.  It's cute, but not too cutesy.  The applicator is a spooly-brush (similar to a mascara brush) which makes it easy to comb through my brows.  It goes on nicely, and looks very natural on my brows, adding a bit of color and a nice amount of hold, which definitely lasts all day.   The isn't the color I would choose for myself, but Caramel is a medium golden brown with a hint of golden shimmer (which I didn't notice on my brows at all).  I could see this being a really nice product if you have naturally shaped brows that don't need much filling in but maybe need a little control.  My brows are lighter than my hair and full of scars and such, so I need a bit more of a heavy-duty product to fill them in, but I like the idea of this for a natural look.  It also claims to plump hair follicles with botanical extracts, but I have thick brows already, so I can't judge that either.  It retails individually for about $21.

Awkward Chic rating: Would I buy this?  Probably not, just because the brow gel and one of the lip glosses don't work for my coloring.  But would I buy the Heiress gloss and the shadow duo separately?  Yes!  Especially the shadow duo.  I'd buy other Anastasia shadow duos in fact.

Disclaimer: this product was provided to me for review, but all my opinions are my own, and I am not paid to review products.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Outfit of the Day and Zoya

I got a dress from H&M this weekend!  I really like it.  It was like $45, it's fitted through the waist with an a-line skirt, an exposed zipper up the back, no sleeves, and a high-ish neckline.  I'm really feeling higher necklines these days.  This is big for me.  The fabric is thick and stretchy cream with a black lace overlay tacked on top.  It looks really expensive...but it wasn't!  I'm wearing it with a vintage Bergdorf Goodman belt, a Walter jacket, Hue tights and Frye Carmen short boots.

What I really like about this dress is one, that it's so comfy but it looks really put together, and two, it's really easy to style differently.  I tried to make it a little more modern with the sassy boots and leather jacket, but I could also take it in a more '50s direction with a fitted little cardigan and some peep-toe heels. Here's a close-up of the fabric!  And in terms of Zoya, they have a tooonnnn of great promos right now--if you do their 'Share the Love' and sign-up for a new account through your old account (google it, I'm terrible at explaining) then you get 1 free polish and free shipping if you buy two polishes...aka buy 2 get one free and free shipping, which is excellent.  I got (left to right) Wednesday, Dree, and Lara.  I'm wearing Dree right now, and it is a fab dusty olive green.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Outfit of the Day: Madewell

So yesterday I did this thing were I went out and I bought clothes...and it was so great.  I LOVE SHOPPING, GUYS.  I love it.

ANYWAYS.  I got an adorable little lace, '50s dress from H&M that I will probably put pictures up of next week, and in the meantime I have an outfit of the day for y'all.  (Notice the excellent lighting and high-quality camera-work.  Jokes).  I'm wearing a Madewell sweaterdress, Hue brown tights, a vintage belt, and Frye Melissa button boots.

So the story with this dress.  I hate sweaterdresses.  They scare me.  They are generally so not flattering, with the thick, clingy knit fabric.  This one, however, is a nice balance of warm but not bulky fabric and a close, but not clingy fit.  Horizontal stripes also usually scare me, but I think the thickness of the stripes and their cream/coral palette makes them feel fun and fresh.  It has a flattering v-neck and thin stripes on the sleeve cuffs with little buttons down the back, and it's really comfy and I love it.  I'm not a preppy girl at ALL, but I really like this with tights and equestrian boots.  It feels very clean and classic.

AND IT WAS $20.  It was on sale at Madewell for $30 in store, and then it was on double sale!  For $20, it was a total steal, especially since I think it can be dressed up or down nicely, and work for class or work.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Rory Beca for Forever 21

I think I was the only person in the blogosphere that I forgot that Rory Beca was doing a series of capsule collections with Forever 21.  Because I walked into my Forever 21 a few weeks ago and actually kind of screamed to myself.  Apparently there have been 3 collections so far, with the most recent one coming out a few weeks ago.

Guys, it's so cute.  I wanted to buy all the things in the collection.  ALL OF THEM.  I ended up only buying one, because while I love diaphanous, gauzy maxi dresses and tanks on most people, I cannot pull them all off.  Sob.  But here are some of my favorite pieces from the most recent collection (which you should rush over to Forever 21 and buy immediately).

So these two dresses are both sold out online, but they are so cute.  I really like the subtle fishtail hems going on here--it's an easy way to try out the trend, especially since none of the pieces in this collection cost more than $30.  I really like the sportiness of the purple dress, with the thick horizontal stripes.  The combination of the fitted top and a-line skirt is really cute and flattering.  I bought the green dress (actually much greener in real life), and it was like $25, and it is fantastic.  It's a muted hunter green with blue undertones in a silky (admittedly man-made) fabric with laser-cut patterning along the hem.  The laser-cutting is so lovely.  It looks really delicate and just plain fancy in person.  The drawstring waist gives it some shape, and the straps are adjustable.  I've worn it about 3 times, and gotten at least 5 compliments each time.

Watercolor Skirt, $17.80 at, Textured heart skirt, $24.80 at How cute is the pattern on that watercolor skirt?  For $17, that's a pretty versatile piece, and a nicely flattering cut.  But I really want that heart skirt!  I want to do maxi skirts, but the sheer + mini combo is just so much more flattering than a real maxi skirt.  Plus it's a lot fresher feeling, and the heart pattern adds a lot of visual interest.  AND IT'S LESS THAN $25.  I want to buy it and wear it with a fitted pastel tank and a lot of necklaces and some sassy shoes.

Images via:,,

Monday, April 2, 2012

Review: Fresh Sugar Rosé Tinted Lip Balm

I feel like I've started every post this semester with something along the lines of, "I promise, I didn't die."

Well, I promise I didn't die.  So much busy, so little sleep, so little free times (all of which are being spent watching The West Wing, which I am now hopelessly obsessed with.  Someone make me a White House Press Secretary, okay?).  Anyways, I've bought some stuff over the last month that I'm going to try to review, starting with this lip balm.

I really, really wanted to hate this product.  I know that sounds weird.  But I've seen so much about these floating around the Internet, mostly positive, some negative, but all pointing towards me loving it.  Do I want to love a sheer, $22 lip balm?  No.  Not at all.  $22 for lip balm is kind of obscene.  Did I end up loving it in spite of that?  Sadly, yes.

I'm talking about the Fresh Sugar lip balms.  They are all $22.50 at, come in a wide range of colors with SPF 15, and are basically the best thing since slice bread and Nutella.  So the colors are Original (clear), Coral, Rosé (berry rose), Honey (nude), Passion (crimson red), and Plum (berry plum).  I would have picked up Coral, but it came out just about a week after I originally bought Rosé, which is what's pictured below.  It's not really worth swatching, because the picture is pretty true to life and it swatches pretty sheer.

Here's the rundown:

Packaging: Oh, the most excellent of packaging.  First off, it comes in a pretty, printed little box that was almost too lovely to throw away.  The actual tube itself is metal, and has a really nice, luxurious weight to it.  You twist off the cap, and then twist up the base to push up the lip balm.  I love this packaging.  It looks gorgeous, it feels expensive (haha, well, it is), and it's functional--I never loose the lid in my purse and risk damaging the lip balm.

Formula: Oh goodness.  It goes on like butter.  It really does feel like a balm, in that it actually goes beyond the surface of my lips to deal with dryness, and doesn't just sit on top of them.  My lips are noticeably less chapped when I use this on a daily basis.  Furthermore, the lasting power of this balm is impressive.  I can still feel it on my lips more than 2 hours later, which is more than I can say for most lip products.  The SPF is a really pleasant bonus here.  Plus, it tastes like lemon cookies!  The taste/smell doesn't linger, but it's yummy.

Color: Sephora describes this as a berry rose, which I'd say is pretty accurate.  On me it goes on as a sheer pink-red that amps up the color of my lips just enough to be noticeable but not so much that I can't apply this without a mirror.  I am a huge fan of sheer lip colors that still pack a color punch, and am dying to try the Coral and Nude versions of this.

Awkward Chic rating: A reluctant A.  It's overpriced, and I'm probably going to go through a tube of this in a few months, but I LOVE IT.  I use it all the time.  It's upsettingly fabulous.  I will probably spend an obscene amount of money on these.

Image via


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