My little eye spies the brand new Excel Shimmer Mix Shadows available from Sana this Summer!
Available in three shades for 1,260 yen each these pretty mosaic shadows look quite interesting. I have three of these LE’s from a few year’s ago but they are solid colors and not as pretty. The finish is a heavy duty shimmer so if you’re not a big fan of such a finish I’d avoid but for those of us that are sparkle junkies these should please!
Colors available are SM01 (Pink), SM02 (Gold) and SM03 (Green).
Excel has updated it’s catalog with a new base makeup for Spring 2009!
Is it me or did Excel grow up suddenly? It’s now featured as an elegant brand where before I got more of a cheap vibe from it. Hmm maybe it’s just me!
Two new items are featured for the base makeup line up which are a pressed powder and a concealer. The pressed powder contains SPF 32 which is a rather nice number for powder. The items are 1,600 and 2,200 yen respectively with refills for the compact at a nice price of 1,500 yen. Although these current sums convert like absolute rubbish to USD the actually beauty budget would being able to purchase in yen 😉
I doubt I’ll indulge as I’m really concealer’ed out at this point (way too many concealer reviews from this Muse lately!) and I’m still mourning Raycious to indulge in any new Japanese powders but it does look like a nice line up of items.
As we near the end of the month and start in on March I’m sure we’ll see more and more Japanese brands that will begin updating their base makeup line. I look forward to seeing what Lunasol and a few other brands have in store for us.
The Muse admits she’s picky, finicky and possible a snob. Oh well ok I admit that the last part I am about 100% of the time.
According to the Muse’s virtues as stated above she pours over, selects, and chooses only the most gorgeous of cosmetics to grace her collection. It must be pretty, it must be girlish, it must be princess-like, it must be gorgeous, and it must have some shimmer, sparkle, shine, and glitter!
Sometimes…the Muse has to remind herself that even the most basic of cosmetics in the most simplest of packages are actually well worth her while.
For example take Excel Gradation Cheeks palette…..
Now the Excel Gradation Cheeks Palettes are possibly the most ugliest and cheapest looking palette I’ve come across from Japan. Where as most of the Japanese cosmetic market chooses to go the pretty route, Excel decided to gaudy cheap plastic gold packaging was the way to go! Your lesson today is sometimes it’s not a good idea to judge a book by it’s cover.
I’m a long time fan of Excel Gradation Cheeks since being introduced to them by my mate Iris and I must say aside from the rather crummy packaging the quality is super. I do prefer my blush to pop as you may have noticed from my FOTD’s however when I’m looking for a nice, natural finish with a bit of shimmer I turn to these! The shades are all quite flattering and very wearable! I actually like using these to top off a blush I’m already wearing as these add a bit of highlight and sparkle to my look!
Each palette contains not one but four shades of blush in a strip arrangement. The shades vary from lighter to darker and when combined create a softly focused highlighted face look. The formula of the powder is silky and easy to blend. As I mentioned they do have a shimmering finish but nothing too dramatic so even shimmer haters can love these.
The palettes come with a super soft brush that’s easily stored on top of the powder….have no fear a small plastic sheet is included to place over the powder so the brush doesn’t make a mess of it laying on top. Normally it would bug me that the brush lays atop the powder but I actually notice no mess or problems with it arranged as so.
If you’re looking for a softer blush with a hint of shimmer I’d definitely recommend indulging in these! At 1,890 yen per a palette it’s not alot to spend as they are quite large and will last ages. The Muse Approves ’em since they contain a healthy dose of shimmer and give her cheeks a flattering dose of color!
If you’re wanting ’em do have a look at my Japanese Buying Guide to see where they might be located online!
Tell the Muse!
I got myself a Shu curler this past Summer and every since after I haven’t gone back to another curler (read about the first time I became smitten with the Shu curler by clicking here!).
I’ve been through many curlers and none have worked as well as my Shu! But the Excel Spring Power Curler did tempt me with it’s allure of Limited Edition Pink Glitteryiness (is that even a word?).
When I seen it on the Sana website with the Excel Christmas Collection I knew I had to have it. It was cute, it was compact, and it had something important called “Spring Power”. My god it sure did sound amazing! I love Excel cosmetics so anything else this great brand puts out must be fantastic right? Wrong.
Where as the Shu is long, slick, and easy to handle the Excel is more compact which actually isn’t a problem at all. It fits very comfortably in my hand and my fingers slip right in, nice and snug in the handle. The size as far as I can see isn’t a problem at all and I was quite excited about how very tiny it was and how great it fit into my hand. This was surely a sign of wonderful things to come, sadly not! Now the beauty of the Shu curler is it fits the contour of my eye perfectly without pinching, tugging, or just general ouch! The Excel, to my horror, pinches like a lobster (I think I lost a few eyelashes somewhere along the way!!!!). Ow! It doesn’t fit well along the contour of my eye and it almost seems as if it isn’t catching all my lashes plus I have to sort of sit and maneuver it around my lashes and eye, I feel like I’m doing a puzzle and the piece isn’t fitting so I have to sit and jiggle it in. When I finally do have it fitted correctly to my eye and squeeze down I get a really harsh pinch! Ugh!
Now the entire idea of a spring back on the handle seemed interesting although I’ve figured out it’s somewhat pointless! When I use my Shu curler I hold down for a few and I’m ready! With the Excel the point of having a “springing” action in the handle seems just to make life more difficult. The urge of the handle to pop right back after making contact with your lashes is instant which leads to a problem of waiting a few for the curl to set in so to speak. If you curl your lashes you must know what I mean! Squeeze once and yes of course your lashes do curl up but the handle snaps back really quickly and holding it down is a bit tricky and tiresome due to the “spring”. I like to hold the curler down for a minute to let the curl set in a little bit. This is especially important if you’re using a curl keeper spray for your curler like I do (if you aren’t familiar with curl keeper it’s an Asian product, it’s not available in the US as far as I know, that you spray on your curler and it holds the curl of your lashes, almost like hairspray for your eyelashes).
My next gripe would be with the curler pad. It’s not a soft foam sadly. It’s more like a plastic piece and it’s hard and it hurts. I think the pinching not only comes from the fact that this isn’t fitting my eye correctly but also from the hardness of the pad!
Overall, if the promise of a spring powered curler and the delights of pink and glitter have blinded you and you felt the urge to purchase this I’d say you’re better off skipping. This is only cost me about 800 yen I believe so it didn’t break the bank too much! Take your money and buy a Shu curler you’ll be happier! If you’re planning on purchasing this I’ve seen it range from $12.50-$16 USD at Asian online shops so that indeed would be major money lost as at that price you can just buy a high end curler!
The weird thing is I believe this is a best seller for Sana but me it’s just money not spent too well!