Tag Archives: swatches

Review: NYC Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil

17 Nov

 Price: $3.99 CAD at Wal-Mart

These are some eyeliners I found while on one of my drug store treasure hunts. They are by N.Y.C. (New York Color); a brand I normally pass over when shopping, but I faintly remembered reading something about their waterproof liners so I bought a couple.  After playing with them at home for a few days, I went back and bought the rest.

They remind me of a waterproof version of the Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliners, which I always thought should come in a waterproof version too. Be careful with these on your water line; some have shimmers in them that feel a bit scratchy. The blue and purple felt fine on me, but the teal was really itchy.  If you plan on wearing these on your water line for a night out, I suggest you test it out a few days before so your eyes have time to recover if it’s irritating.

Formula: Similar to Urban Decay’s 24/7 liners, but not as creamy. I like that, since the Urban Decay ones can melt when it’s hot and never stay more than a half hour on my water line. These have MUCH better staying power, and don’t make me want to scratch my eyes out after a day or night of wearing them.

Pigmentation: Very strong, this was the most surprising feature to me. In my opinion, they have the pigmentation of a high-end eyeliner. You get opaque colouring with one or two swipes. And they blend beautifully. These blended into a MAC Paint Pot or Maybelline Color Tattoo base makes for a quick and polished daytime look.

Longevity of wear: All. Day. Long. These babies will last you all day and night. As far as I can tell, they are completely unaffected by tears and sweat. They can be a bit annoying to take off at the end of a long day, make sure to use makeup remover or Vaseline so you don’t pull at your eye too much. 

Packaging: Cute and made from durable plastic. Unlike some brands, the colour of the packaging actually matches the colour of the product inside. This is great if you’re like me and you hate searching through a pile of eyeliners for those little coloured tips.

They come in seven colours. I discovered they make two completely different Smokey Plums, so really there are eight altogether.

931 Black (last): A nice, inky matte black. This is my go-to black eyeliner for filling in my upper lashes and putting on my waterline. It doesn’t itch and make my eyes water like so many black eyeliners do. Anchoring this with a little black eyeshadow (or any colour really) will keep in in place for hours.


932 Dark Brown: Very dark matte chocolate brown. This is my favourite and most used eyeliner of the bunch. I wear it pretty much every day because it’s dark enough, but doesn’t have the harshness of black. This is a universally flattering shade of brown.


933 Mink: A medium brown with fine silver and gold sparkles. I usually wear this one with some mascara when I don’t have a lot of time to get ready in the morning. It also works well blended out over the lid as an eyeshadow base. Not terribly unique, but a beautiful shimmery brown to have in your collection. (Not good for the waterline).


934 Smokey Plum (version 1): I’m calling this one version 1 because it’s more of a true plum than the other.  A gorgeous amethyst/eggplant purple with a red-pink shimmer. This is such a spectacular colour and would be so beautiful on green eyes. If you’re doing a purple look, this shade ties everything together nicely. It also pairs nicely with green, brown and gold shades.

(version 2): Also called ‘Smokey Plum’, this is more of a true, medium matte purple. It looks similar to the first Smokey Plum, but without shimmer and slightly darker. It had the most uneven consistency of them all, and because of this I wear it the least.


935 Moody Blue: This is a dark indigo blue with light blue iridescent shimmer. I’m a sucker for jewel tones and this is just such a great sapphire. Another great alternative to black eyeliner, but it’s still dark enough to make your lashes stand out.  The shimmer in this is fine enough for wear on the water line, in fact the shimmers seem to stop it from bleeding as much as the shades with no shimmer.


936 Sky High: This is a light purple-blue with very fine blue and pink shimmer. It’s a very unique colour that I would liken to a periwinkle blue. This is the lightest shade and to be honest I haven’t used this one at all, but I’m working on finding a way!


937 Teal: A green-teal colour infused with yellow and gold glitter. Wow! This is super shimmery and has that lit-from-within appearance in the swatch. I would not recommend this go in the waterline at all, but you can sort of tell when you’re swatching it because the glitter is really big and visible.  What’s more, the glitter doesn’t feel gritty at all.

Overall: These have become the eyeliner I reach for pretty much every day. They come in a fantastic array of shades for s drugstore brand (the double Smokey Plum is a bonus too!). I would recommend these to anyone looking for some good, colourful eyeliners.

What’s your favourite eyeliner?

– Julia


Review: CARGO Eye Shadow 5-Palette

7 Aug

This is an eyeshadow compact that I bought from (surprise, surprise) Winners for $8.99. The CARGO Eyeshadow 5-Palette is regularly $34 CAD, but are now for sale on the CARGO website for $8 each.  I didn’t own anything by CARGO and this was a nice little neutral palette so I thought I would try it out.

This palette is called Paradise Island and it consists of five eyeshadows in the warm brown family. (I swatched them clockwise, with the centre shade last).


(1) Bronzy-brown with a copper shimmer.  (2) Light pink highlight with white shimmer. (3) Light bronzy-brown, very similar to the first colour but sheerer. (4) Light pinky-brown that appears matte, but has a very fine pink iridescence. (5) Mid-tone brown loaded with warm brown shimmer.


Formula: The formula feels very nice to me; the shadows blended very well. I noticed a bit of fall-out with the darkest shade, but nothing that can’t be fixed with concealer. Other than that, all colours applied smoothly with no patchiness. 

Pigmentation: Strong, consistent colouring in all shades. There is shimmer in all of these colours, which would normally bother me in a neutral palette. The shimmers differ in size and colour that gives the shades beautiful dimension. This sets it apart from most average brown eyeshadow compacts.

Longevity of wear: These will go all day with no fading when you use a good primer. I haven’t worn them on their own, but I would if my lids weren’t so oily. Yesterday was very humid plus I was building IKEA furniture, I wore them under a MAC paint pot and they didn’t budge.

Packaging: Nothing special, just regular clear plastic. Definitely not cheap plastic, the case feels very sturdy and the clasp is has not come loose. 100% travel safe!


This is what I wore yesterday: (5) is on the lid, with (1) in the outer corner. (4) is in the crease with (2) on brow bone and tear duct. I wore this over MAC paint pot in Groundwork and blended NYX Jumbo Pencil in Dark Brown on the outer part of the upper and lower lash lines.

Overall: A nice palette to own if you like neutral brown eyes, or if you just want a quick go-to look for everyday. High quality eyeshadow for a great price; I’m glad I picked this up. I will definitely be trying out for more CARGO stuff in the future.

Are you familiar with CARGO? What are some of you favourite products?

– Julia

Review: NYX Love’s Anthem 10-Lipgloss Set

30 Jul

This is a set of 10 NYX lip glosses that I bought at Urban Outfitters while I was in the States. There isn’t very much listed on the packaging, the glosses don’t even have names, but I think these are supposed to be smaller/sample size versions of their Mega Shine Lip Glosses. It doesn’t say how much each tube contains, but it looks like about half as much as a regular 11ml tube.


Formula: It seems to be a bit different from the full size Mega Shine Lip Gloss formula. In my opinion it’s not as good, it’s much more drying. They don’t have the cherry medicine smell the regular version does, but I am picking up a sweet, candy-like scent. It’s faint, but you may not like it if scented products irritate you.

Pigmentation: Good pigmentation for all glosses, some were obviously meant to have stronger colouring than others. The more opaque-coloured glosses bled a little bit so they would be best worn over a lip liner or lipstick for an extra pop of shine. The shimmers in the glosses very finely milled and don’t feel gritty on the lips.

Longevity of wear: As I mentioned, these glosses bleed so they’re not exactly made for super-long wear. They settle into lines after a while, so frequent reapplication is necessary.


The first gloss is a bright, shiny, candy-apple red. It’s very pretty and opaque, but I think because of the bleeding issues it would be best worn over a lipstick or lip liner. As you can see, it kind of goes all over the place!


This is a darker, blue-based red. Less pin-up red, more of a vampy red. I think I will be reaching for this in the fall. This is very opaque and has less bleeding than the first red, but I would still wear it over something.


Cool-toned purple-fuchsia with fine blue shimmer. I’m pretty sure this is supposed to be African Queen, which is a colour very unique to NYX.  You could probably wear this one on its own, but the full sized version wears much better.


Mid-tone, cool bubblegum pink. This one looks like Dolly Pink, but is a bit lighter. You can see a slight blue shimmer in the tube, but it’s undetectable on the lips. Very opaque, but slightly bleed-y and settles into lines.


Super shimmery opaque copper. I think the massive amount of shimmer in this stops it from bleeding as much, but I wouldn’t wear this on it’s own. The shimmer in this shows up range so I can see it being really nice over reds for the fall.


Tan-nude peach with fine gold shimmer. I’m picking up a bit of a yellow undertone, but maybe that’s just against my skin. On it’s own this is semi-opaque but I could quickly see it settling into lines after I applied it.  This could be worn on its own, or over nudes and peaches.


The last four look very similar. This is a semi-opaque peachy-pink with obvious silver sparkles (bigger than shimmer). It’s more of a subdued peachy pink, as opposed to the usual bright, summery peachy-pink. It didn’t seem to settle into lines quite as much as the other light colours.


Light, almost pastel pink. It’s cool-toned, with the same silver sparkles as the previous gloss. It’s fairly opaque, but settles into lines very quickly.


Translucent light pink base with gold and pink flecks. This is the lightest colour, but  the sparkles almost give it a two-toned effect. It would be really nice over an everyday neutral lipstick for an extra kick.


The last is a mid-tone pink with fairly large silver shimmer. It’s opaque and doesn’t seem to bleed or settle into lines. It’s nice, but pretty standard as far as pink glosses go.


Overall: Nice set, but glosses just don’t feel as good on the lips as the regular Mega Shine Lip Glosses. It’s great if you’d like to try out some new colours, but the full-size glosses aren’t very expensive (you can usually get them from cherry culture for about $4.00 each) and you get a lot more product.

What are your favourite NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss colours?

– Julia

Review: Essence Silky Touch Blushes

21 Jul


Essence is a German cosmetics brand that has recently (in the past year or so) come to Canada. You can buy essence at Shopper’s Drug Mart locations and their products are very inexpensive. Like, everything is under $5.00 type of inexpensive.

I’ve bought a number of things from essence since discovering the brand and I have been extremely impressed by the quality of everything. My absolute favourite are the Silky Touch Blushes. They’re beautifully pigmented, blend well and come in great colours (a good, natural brown-hued blush is a rare find in a drugstore). The formula is simply amazing.


The Shopper’s Drug Mart website does not list the prices, but the essence Silky Touch Blushes could not have been any more than $3.00 and they come in four difference colours. Let me just say, these little babies are amazing. Here are my thoughts:

Pigmentation: These are very pigmented, going from pan to face is a no-no. Swirl your brush on the back of your hand before applying, repeat until you have your desired opacity.

Wear: Perfect, absolutely no problems. It’s been extremely hot and humid lately and these last all day with no fading.

Blend-ability: No issues with blending into powder or liquid foundation. I tend to give my cheeks a once-over with my powder brush after applying the blush, just so there are no harsh edges.

Packaging: No problems so far, the plastic is study and the hinge feels solid. I’ve even dropped them while open, and they still survived. Traveling with these might be a bit tricky, but the price is reasonable so replacing it wouldn’t be too tough.

Ok here are the shades:



This is a peachy-brown colour with warm undertones. A slight shimmer shows up in the swatch, but it’s not obvious on the cheek. This one is my favourite! I love this on it own, or with bronzer. It pairs nicely with colourful and dramatic eye looks because it is so neutral. It gives me a very naturally flushed look.





This is a warm, bright orange-coral with obvious gold sparkles. It looks quite pink in the swatch but it doesn’t look like this in person. It’s a fun blush; perfect for a pop of summery colour. It comes off a bit chalky in the swatch, but it blends fine on the cheek.





This is a mid-tone pink with a hint of berry. It’s the most pigmented of all the blushes, so be careful! It also has a fine shimmer in the swatch, but it doesn’t really show up on the cheek. I haven’t used this one much yet, but I can see myself reaching for it more in the fall.




This is a light, yellow-hued pink with a matte finish. It’s kind of like a bubblegum pink, but not as bright.  This one also swatches a little chalky, but doesn’t appear that way on the cheek.




These blushes are fabulous, whether you’re on a budget or not.  Anyone looking to expand their blush collection could easily pick up all of the colours. What do you guys think of these?

– Julia

Review: Color Club All About Color Collection

4 Jul

I bought this set of polishes from Winners on the weekend. I literally cannot stop myself from buying Color Club collections whenever I see them, $14.99 for six polishes is just too good to pass up.  This is the All About Color collection; it comes with six polishes and one topcoat.

The names of the polishes aren’t printed on the bottles so it’s hard to know what is what. I searched the Color Club website and I cannot find this particular All About Color collection on the website.

All polishes have a creme finish. Most were fairly thin, needing at least three coats for full coverage. The only downside to Color Club polishes is the drying time; three coats dry in about 30 minutes, but are still tacky. I would give them a full hour before showering or anything. If you use a fast-drying topcoat like Seche Vite, I would give it about 15 minutes longer than other polishes. This is just my opinion, and I tend to apply very thick coats.

With a base and topcoat, these last about 4 or 5 days. This is ok for me because I change my nails about three times a week. I don’t think these would last very well without top and basecoat because if you get an air bubble it will start to chip/peel.


Thanks to a great nail blog called ChitChatNails, I finally found the colour names:

– Coral Cascade

– Factory Girl

– I Believe in Amour

– Who Are You Wearing?

– He Loves Me

– Edie

Coral Cascade looks subdued and pastel-like in the bottle, but dries to a true coral on the nails. Isn’t bright or neon like some summer corals, very office-appropriate.


Factory Girl is a very light, pastel sky-blue. It kind of feels like you’re painting your nails with whiteout. Be careful with this one, it’s VERY drying on the cuticles, but I still like it.


I Believe in Amour looks like a cool-toned bubble-gum pink in the bottle, but shows up a bright lavender-pink on the nails. Very pretty and girly, surprisingly opaque for a light colour. I don’t have any colours like this.


Who Are You Wearing? Is an extremely light greyed lilac. It looks almost white on the nails, but is not drying like Factory Girl. On the nails, more of a taupe colour comes out, but it’s still tinged with purple. I applied 3 coats, but it could use a fourth.


He Loves Me is a barely-there neutral pink, reminds me of something you might wear at your wedding. It’s a lovely spring colour, perfect for everyday. This was 3 coats but it could also use a fourth.


Edie is a bright (almost neon) tropical sea-green colour. Like Coral Cascade, it looks pastel in the bottle, but is brighter once applied. I don’t own any greens like this; the bordering-on-neon makes it unique in my collection.


Overall, it’s a cute little collection. Not the most special Color Club collection but I’m glad I picked it up. My favourites are Coral Cascade, I Believe in Amour, He Loves Me and Edie. Which do you like?

– Julia