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Happy New Year to us all! Let’s hope is shiny, new, and gives us all hope for the best things to come! I’m a bit late with this post but it’s here now.
If you read my blog daily you probably remember last year when I did a round up of allllllllllllllllll my very favorite bits and bobs that I loved over the course of the year. Honestly it’s difficult for me to pick and choose favorite items and do Beauty Award style posts because I have way too many favorite items that I love. For me it’s best to round up items that I’ve used all year and have grown to love. Considering the Muse’s “favorites” change so often it’s hard to nail down exactly what sort of products I’ve come to love over the course of the year.
Being the Muse means that products come and go out of my life at a rather constant and alarming speed. Makeup is like crack and what once got me high an hour ago probably isn’t giving me the same high in this present hour.
Alas you can see the dilemma of creating a list of items that I would award the best of it’s kind. However, instead of rounding up a massive amount of product the way I did last year (damn straight I was excited about alot of crap last year!), I decided to give myself a tiny bit of breathing room. I stepped back, I contemplated, I thought (don’t worry the thought process didn’t blow out any light bulbs or cause any world crisis that I know of. No that wasn’t me that caused the stock market crash!) and I decided that a few things have become really favorite items of mine. These favorite items are what I’ll share with you today!
I hope you enjoy this look at some of the Muse’s very favorite items of the year. These items aren’t necessarily released in 2008 but they are just generally awesome items that I either use daily or have used many a time that they are now considered a favorite.
I hope after you’ve read my favorites you’ll share some of your own with me!
Favorite Cosmetic Collection of the Year
There have been SO many collections released over the course of the year but none have thrilled me more than the inexpensive Spring Collection from Etude House entitled Lovely Face aka “Peach” Makeup Collection.
The collection consisted of some of my very favorite items released thus far from Etude House such as the amazing Pore Erasing Peach Base! Truly this was love! This collection makes a daily appearance in my looks especially the pressed powder and base.
My raves and excitement were so loud they reached the ears of Etude House and the Muse was featured on Etude House’s official blog
and later featured in the Etude House Newsletter
which is given out at Etude House stores in Korea. You can imagine my excitement over this! The Muse felt like she made a guest starring appearance in the New York Times on the front cover or something! For her appearing in this newsletter was actually better!
Upon reading her review you can obviously see why this Muse was so excited about this collection and deems it her very favorite of the year! Cheers Etude House! The Muse is looking forward the Spring 2009!
I won’t deny that it hurts me so many people thought that NARS Blush in Super Orgasm was a let down. I sob in agony when I hear a bad word against it. It was my ideal image of what I wanted the original orgasm to be and upon it’s release I couldn’t sit still as I wriggled in excitement at the prospect of chunks of golden glitter and a peach sheen! Understandably all that glitter is what makes it my favorite however I find once it’s blended the glitter goes away and a deeper color is revealed that is, in my opinion, perfect and a favorite. NARS Blush in Super Orgasm is definitely a Muse fav (#1)!
2. Pop Rose Belle Blush Palette
3. Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge For Lips and Cheeks in Raspberry
4. Sugar Cosmetics Sweet Cheeks in Gingerbread
5. Lola Blush in Mistress
6. and 7. Jillian Dempsey for Avon Horizon Blush
Favorite Face Powder/Highlighter
Seems like just yesterday that I was ohhhhh’ing and ahhhh’ing over Benefit Thrrob! Almost a year later and it still tops my favorite list but I have a feeling it won’t remain there long as it’ll be quickly replaced by Benefit Coralista soon I’m sure! For now though Benefit Thrrob (#3) is a Muse fav!
1. Estee Lauder Shimmering Jewel Powder
2. Lancome Elephant Bronzer Powder
Favorite Single Eyeshadow
Lord knows last year I had a slew of shadows that were my favorite! This year I cut back drastically simply because I had fewer favorites plus I found one that I really loved so much that nothing else came close to topping it!
Now it may be unfair to deem it a single shadow since it’s actually two shadows in one but the Muse thinks that Jelly Pong Pong Venus Magical Pearls in Worship (#2) is absolutely the best shadow she’s used all year long! Shimmering golds mixed with copper created a stunning Summer look that the Muse favored well into the months of Fall and beyond!
Although Jelly Pong Pong Venus Magical Pearls in Worship are my very favorite I had a few shadows that I reach for almost all the time and they are truly worth mentioning for this round up!
1. Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Kiddie Pool
3. Milani Wet/Dry Sparkling Eyeshadow in Beach Sand
4. MAC Eyeshadow in Antique Pink
5. Bare Escentuals Glimmer in Azure
Favorite Eyeshadow Palette
Lord knows I have a serious addiction when it comes to palettes. Would you believe at one time in my life I was only ever collecting single shadows? I avoided palettes like the plague simply because I was at a lost how to best use all the shades! Later in life I realized the joy I was missing and started to stash every palette I came across. A hundred years later and I’m the proud owner of one too many palettes and possibly out a year’s tuition of my future unborn child’s education.
Although the formula isn’t particularly amazing I name the DuWop Crush Trio my very favorite of the year (#1)! I’m still puzzling over how three simple shades can make any number of different, stunning, unique looks! It was my total go to palette for sizzling Summer eye looks and worked well into the cooler weather for a perfect sparkling Autumn look! It was a hard choice to deem this as my favorite considering it was up against my all time biggest crush, KATE Glamtrick Palette in GN1 but the Muse decided that she had a tiny bit of extra love for DuWop and thus it became her favorite.
2. Laneige Darling Big Eyes! Trio
3. KATE Dual Carat Eye Duo in GD-2
4. Clarins Colour Quartet in So Chic
5. KATE Glamtrick Palette in GN1
6. Lunasol Geminate Eyes Palette 01
Favorite Liquid and Cream Eyeshadow
I didn’t think anything could take away from my deep love and appreciation for Visee Aqua Shining Eyes. After all these were the liquid shadow that single handedly changed my mind about liquid and cream shadows! But after trying out Coffret D’Or Fluffy Shine Eyes (#1) my emotions turned and soon all that love and admiration was being poured all over Coffret D’Or for creating such an a gorgeous, shimmering shadow that this Muse thinks of as a fond favorite!
2. Visee Aqua Shining Eyes
You already know what the Muse’s favorite gloss is dontcha? I’ve mentioned about 5 billion times since picking it up with the MAC Neo Sci-Fi Collection….yes….you got it….MAC Lipglass in Pink Grapefruit!!!!!!! Although MAC Lipglass isn’t really a favorite gloss of mine I can’t deny that it has incredible staying power, is nicely pigmented, and wears well however MAC Lipglass in Pink Grapefruit is possibly my most favorite lipgloss shade EVER! Peachy, Orangy, glorious! It is, was, and shall remain a personal favorite!
2. Stila Lipglaze
3.Lipstick Queen Sinner Shine Hardcore Gloss
4. MAC Lipglass in Cult of the Cherry
5. NARS Lipgloss in Orgasm
6. Majorca Majolica Rouge majex in PK338
7. Love Clover PopChu Gloss
8. Too Faced Mirror Mirror Lipgloss
Without question I was thrilled to pieces with the release of MAC Lipstick in Kiss Manish (#1) which went perfectly well with my MAC Lipglass in Pink Grapefruit! Obviously it’s not hard to see why I choose it as my favorite lipstick this year!
2. Urban Decay Lipsticks
3. Fafi for MAC Lipstick in Flash n Dash
4. Avon Ultra Color Rich Lipstick in Charmed Rose
5. Armani Lip Wax
Favorite Cheek and Lip Stains
The Muse is a big lover of cheek and lip stains! Anything to make her look flatteringly flushed is always good in her book. One of her very favorites of the year was of course Benefit Posietint(#1)! Fancy, flattering pink to make her flush a pretty pink shade was the order of business with the release of Posietint! Truly a favorite this year.
2. Missha Tinted Lip Markers
3. Etude House 55 Kissful Tint Chou
Without a doubt my discovery of Bobbi Brown Gel liner(#1) was instant love! It applies beautifully well the first time, every time! The Muse thinks it’s well worth your time and it’s her favorite of the year!
2. Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner Pencils
Favorite Eyeshadow Primer
There isn’t any doubt in my mind that my favorite primer is, will be, and shall remain Urban Decay Primer Potion (#1). The Muse is doubtful she’ll ever find a better primer that keeps her shadow fresh and long wearing all day and well into the night!
2. MAC Paint Pot in Soft Ocher
3. Benefit Lemon Aid
Favorite Eyeshadow Palette
It’s difficult deciding on just one palette but the Muse was quite pleased with Prescriptives Fall Dimensions Eye Color Quad (#1)! Creating two unique looks using this palette made it a fond favorite for the Fall and well into the Winter!
2. Bobbi Brown Holiday Lip and Eye Palette
3. Bobbi Brown Shimmering Nudes Palette
It never really changes and this year remains the same, my favorite mascara that is. My absolutely fav mascara for a few years now is Majolica Majorca Lash Extender (#1). Any formula and this Muse is all over it for fatter, longer, and prettier lashes!
2. Lorac Visual Effects Mascara
3. Givenchy Phenonmen Eyes Mascara
Favorite Face Primer
I’m run across some great primers this year but I truly adored and favored Make Up For Ever HD Perfecting Primer (#1). Available in a wide variety of formulas and shades for correcting skin tone while priming, the Muse thought this was one hell of a primer!
2. Tricia Sawyer Skin Balancing Water Primer
3. Lavshuca Perfect Base Moist
Without a doubt the most reached for concealer of the year for this Muse was the Bobbi Brown Concealer palette…it took a while for me to love it but when I finally did fall in love it was for keeps! Bobbi Brown Concealer Palette (#1) tops this Muse’s list as a fav!
2. Laura Mercier Undercover Concealer Pot Duo
3. Benefit Boi-ing
4. Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil
5. Make Up For Ever Lift Concealer
Favorite Beauty Tools
The Muse thinks nothing can top the simplicity of a sponge applicator (#1) for packing on color, blending color, and creating a great eye look! Cheap as day old chips, sponge applicators are a top favorite with the Muse!
2. Bare Escentuals Eye Buki Brush
3. MAC 183
4. MAC Baby Buki
5. Bobbi Brown Mini Blush Brush
6. Smashbox #60
7. Aromaleigh Fiber Optic Blush Brush
8. Bare Escentuals Dual End Smudge Brush
The Muse has stashed away quite a few foundations as of late but she must say that this year she was pretty happy with Clarins Instant Smooth Foundation (#1). Instant Smooth was like no other foundation product I’ve tried and it became a fast favorite this year for beautifully perfect skin!
2. Lavshuca Creamy Liquid Foundation
3. Lancome Absolute Makeup
4. Etude House BB Magic Cream
5. Giorgio Armani Face Fabric
6. Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enchancer
7. Benefit Playsticks
Favorite Facial Moisturizers
The Muse was quite happy with the newest facial moisturizers released from Lush this year and she was absolutely thrilled with Lush Vanishing Cream (# 1). Vanishing Cream was this Muse’s ideal moisturizer for soothing her skin while offering a light formula that was easily absorbed into skin! Brilliant and a favorite!
2. Philosophy When Hope is Not Enough
3. Lush Skin Nanny
4. Lush Paradise Regained
Favorite Facial Scrubs
The Muse is a big lover of Lush Ocean Salt but she does so admit that after trying MAC’s amazing Volcanic Ash Exfoliant (#1) she was convinced it was her new favorite! Volcanic Ash played an important part is scrubbing away old dry skin and revealing softer, fresher skin! A true fav!
2. Lush Ocean Salt
Best Makeup Removers
The Muse has been known to brag about how much she simply adores Kose Airy Whip (#1) but she’ll keep this one short and say after all that bragging it remains a tried and true favorite for whisking away all the Muse’s makeup in one gentle wash without drying out my skin! Perfection!
2. Lush Ultra Bland
3. Mandom Cleansing Express
4. Jill Stuart Cleansing Oil
The Muse wasn’t really thrilled with the Etude House Aqua Sherbet Skincare line but one favorite did come out of it! Etude House Aqua Sherbet Ice Toner became an instant classic (and favorite) this Summer! Icy, cool, and refreshing it toned the Muse’s skin with a burst of coolness while prepping her face for foundation! T’was love!
2. Lush Breath of Fresh Air
2008 was a fabulous year for makeup, skincare, and general beauty bits and bobs and the Muse had a fab time discovering new products. She hopes that 2009 brings a slew of new options to adventure into and with it a new favorite list will be born.
Please enjoy her favorites list from 2007 as well to see what came back this year as a favorite and what made the list last year!
Do drop a comment below and tell the Muse what your favorites of the year were! She’d love to hear all about them!
Happy New Year everyone! Thank you for being apart of my life the last year!
It’s probably terrible of me to reveal that I was relieved that the Laneige Spring Collection Art Play holds little appeal for me. My Spring Collection list is getting huge and I knew that Laneige would introduce some awesome collection that I’d want to add to my list but upon seeing the promo images I experienced utter relief that I could cross one thing off my list at the least.
Jump ahead to read more about Laneige Art Play….
Might I say the art work they choose for the above promo image is so strangely festive, I’m tuned in to the right channel here right? This is Spring Collections 2009 correct? Not Holiday ’08? Laneige is legendary for including it’s signature snowflake theme on everything but I just get a Christmas vibe with that image.
Secondly, I must have not been awake this morning because when I seen the model on the left hand side of the promo image I thought it was Lee Da Hae…is it me or does it look like her a tiny bit? Can’t see the resemblance? The Muse highly recommends trying it through sleep deprived eyes and you’ll see it! Maybe it’s because I used to have a great love affair with Le Da Hae prior to seeing Sweet 18. Anyway……….
The line up includes four total palettes coined in the usual “Secret of the Snow Crystal” Collection name. Do you heart Laneige in a major way for that name? “The Secret of the Snow Crystal…” cue the dramatic music….
Two of the palettes are a quad of eye shadows and the other two are lip palettes which include six shades.
The palettes look very nice but just not for me. For one I’m not interested at all in the strange design displayed on the emblem. I’d imagine I’d be all over these if the packaging was nice but sadly I’m just not into it at all and secondly the color combos aren’t appealing in the least as they look very washed up.
Although I do not have prices on anything as of yet I can guest-timate that they will probably range in the $20-$25 range as most Laneige color palettes are around that price. From what I’ve seen and heard Singapore has Laneige for even cheaper in some cases than Korea.
All in all I’m actually quite relieved that I can finally cut something off my Spring list as it was getting rather long and outrageous!
What do you think of Laneige Art Play?
Tell the Muse!
It feels like the year virtually flew by doesn’t it? It’s been a great year for makeup that’s for sure! My year end favorite post is upcoming shortly but I thought we could reflect on a few things first!
Some of the questions I asked myself as I was reflecting were the following:
The Muse will place her answers here and you can answer, if you like, in the comment field below! Can’t wait to hear your thoughts on this!
I think I have to take myself all the way back to Spring 2008 to get a good idea of my very favorite collection of the year. The Etude House My Lovely Face Collection (aka Peach Collection) was my absolute favorite of the year! And it’s no wonder with it’s great packaging, fresh peachy shades, and incredible Pore Erasing Peach Base! This was by far my fav of the year! Etude House Spring 2009 I Can’t Help Smiling is simply adorably but in the Muse’s opinion it isn’t nearly as kawaii as last year’s collection!
In reflecting on my tastes and whether they have changed or not from last year I’d have to say a loud YES! I embraced more natural looks this year, got really excited about nudes and neutrals, and just dramatically altered my normal bold looks to include some very mature ones! So yes indeed my tastes have changed a tad bit. This doesn’t mean I don’t still adore bold looks but I have to say I’ve surprised myself with the amount of natural makeup I’ve taken on lately!
Unquestionably my greatest cosmetic find of the year was NARS Blush in Super Orgasm! I’ve heard rants and I’ve heard hate but I simply adored it. For me it was pure perfection! Not that it tops Super Orgasm but discovering that Urban Decay Primer has a SLEW of product left in the bottle after slicing it open is definitely a highlight of my year as well!
I can’t say so much if I embraced any trends this year. I kinda march to the beat of my own drum and I’m not one for embracing a trend but more along the lines of doing my own thing! One trend I definitely couldn’t get a handle on, no mater how hard I tried, was the vampy lip! I tried with MAC Binge and tried again with the Lancome Piha Collection but it just didn’t work on this Muse!
I’d be a liar if I said I wasn’t somewhat excited about the MAC Hello Kitty Collection! Although I made up my own little ideas about how this collection should look, I do find myself getting more and more antsy for it’s release as I am eager to see it in person for myself. Yes, I know I’ll be disappointed but I just can’t seem to shake the feeling that maybe, just maybe, it’ll be great! I’m also excited to see what the Summer has in store for us! Summer releases are a great time to stock up on bold shades so of course I look forward to what MAC, Urban Decay, and other brands have on the menu for the warmer weather!
Now it’s your turn…..
Tell the Muse all about what you loved and hated in 2008?
What your greatest find was?
What trends you embraced?
Ahhh snowflakes…so delicate, so pretty! When the Muse seen the Laneige The Snow Collection she knew she had to have it immediately.
The collection consists of two new eye palettes and a highlighting powder. The Muse will be bringing you a review of one of the eyeshadow palettes today and follow up with the highlighter and other eye palette later next week! Two eye palettes were released with this collection which both contain cool shades. I was feeling a bit pink today so I used the Laneige The Snow Eye Palette 02. This particular palette contains a soft shimmering white gold base, a shimmering pink shade, and a deeper shimmering cranberry.
I think the main appeal of the palettes was the gorgeous snowflake motif. Laneige is legendary for including snow, snowflakes, snow crystals, just about anything snow in their collections. I loved how they stepped that theme up this year and embedded tiny little snowflakes into each of the powder palettes. The snowflakes are all raised so they won’t disappear with one brush stroke! The shadow palettes contain two different snowflake shades and one base shade. I’m pretty partial to the compact design as well with it’s cute raised snowflakes which are actually made of velvet. The palette is a dual compact that has the shadows and mirror on one level and two applicators housed below a la Givenchy compact style packaging. The applicators included are a dual ended sponge tip and a dual ended shadow brush and liner combination.
Today I did a look using Laneige The Snow Eye Palette 02 which consists of softer pinks and golds. The base shade is a lovely white gold with two contrasting, deeper shades of shadow that are pink and cranberry. The compact includes instructions for doing two complete looks using the palette but I felt like you could get a few more with a little imagination. Using the shadows by themselves offers three color options plus combining them can create any number of looks.
I found the instructions for creating the two separate looks a bit hysterical as they throw around some fancy words when they could have just said “use this on the lid….use this on your crease…etc…”
Here’s the instructions for the looks:
Soft Pinky Eye Look
Apply beige color as base shade and express authentic pureness with pink color along lash line.
LOL whoa…that’s some seriously fancy instructions! The Muse says use the beige base as an all over color wash and line your eyes using the pale pink shade!
Luxury Smoky Eye Look
Apply the beige color as a base shade and express premium luxuriousness with the point of purple color along the lash line.
Ummm yea ok! The Muse says slap some of that beige color all over your eye and follow up by lining with the shimmering cranberry!
I thought the shades were nicely pigmented and had a beautiful shimmering finish. Blending was a tiny bit difficult but with a little work you can get it just right. This could be because the formula is slightly crumbly which causes a tiny bit of fall out. I wouldn’t compare the formula to Korean or Japanese drugstore brands which are normally chalky…these were much silkier…maybe a tiny bit gritty but overall quite nice. I honestly love the soft romantic look you can get from this particular palette. For my look below I used the white gold base as an all over color wash and I blended some of the softer pink shade onto my lid and crease.
The palette cost me $23 USD or so which wasn’t a bad deal but sadly it’s exclusive to Asia only as we do not have the base makeup line from Laneige in the US.
The Muse thought it was a welcome edition to her Laneige collection and Muse Approves it for purchase if you can locate it! A very nice palette for not only the Holiday but the cooler weather!
What do you think?
Loving this palette?
Wanting it for yourself?
Tried it already?
Tell the Muse!
Sometimes the Muse feeds into her own frenzy as when she seen Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm Gold Label the two words that jumped out at her was Super and Gold. Obviously if it was super and gold the Muse needed it!
After reading the back which stated, “Gold and Caviar Extract…” she knew this indeed was the BB Cream for her! My god, gold and caviar? It has to work with those ingredients in it! I am almost positive but not quite sure that Robin Leach must surely use Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm Gold Label!
Yeah boy! Champagne Wishes and Caviar Dreams with Skin79 Gold Label BB Cream biatches!
All kidding aside unlike my recently reviewed Etude House Magic BB Cream it manages to feature all the great things you want in a BB Cream! Whitening? Check. Anti-Aging/Wrinkle Coverage? Check. SPF? Check. The kitchen sink? Check. Robin Leach? Their working on that. Aside from the ridiculous factor and the fact that the details on the back of the box are in quite bad “Engrish” I am quite fond of Skin79 Gold Label and it’s another one of my favorite BB Creams that I’ve tested, tried, and loved.
One of the best things about this particular BB is the wonderful packaging. The cream comes in a similar style packaging as Tricia Sawyer Skin Balancing Water Primer which is a nice size pump jar that easily distributes as little or as much of the product as you want simply by pressing heavier or lighter on the depressor.
This will sound weird but the texture of the cream has a heavy yet light feel. It manages to feel quite heavy on your finger but on your face it’s nice and airy and once blended it feels like you have virtually nothing on your skin. It offers extremely good coverage and I think it’s safe to say it’s good for mild to heavier coverage however if you have major problem areas you’re looking to cover up you may need something with a bit more pigmentation or perhaps use alot of this. The color is somewhat beige but it also has a certain grayness to it which is a trait I’ve noticed with whitening BB creams. Though the product blends beautifully and adjusts quite well to my tone it deserves to be mentioned that it does cast an unnaturalness to my skin but I’m not very bothered by this as once my makeup (blush, etc…) is applied this goes away and I’m once again left looking natural. As with most BB’s I’ve tried I didn’t notice any significant change in my under eye area after use and my dark circles needed extra prepping and coverage after using this. Although BB’s make the hefty promise of being your one stop shop for skincare nirvana I beg to differ as I’ve always had to use a concealer afterward so obviously this won’t be taking the place of my concealer anytime soon! Needless to say if you don’t have a ton of woes or drama under your eyes this may likely be perfect for covering up your smaller problems however darker circles, puffiness, and fine line ladies may need an extra helping hand!
Taking into consideration that BB’s not only offer coverage in the here and now but also work at creating long lasting effects I do agree that Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm Gold Label has caused a considerable change in my skin (or the Muse could be just feeding right into that frenzy again! One can never tell!). I noticed my dull skin was looking quite lively after 4 months of use…almost like I was a teenager again! It also had a lasting whitening effect as my skin looked quite even and brighter after continued use of around 6 months of use.
Okee dokee here be the Muse wearing some of this BB cream! Sorry but I’m looking really tired here to say the least! I actually literally applied everywhere even my lips to cover up the pinkness of my lips and prep for lipstick and gloss! You can see that it has a bit of an unnatural glow to it….weirdly enough it reminds me of how my skin looks when I am sick or not feeling well…but after makeup application my skin ends up looking quite flawless!
All in all I do so Muse Approved Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm Gold Label for purchase and it does remain a favorite of mine.
I got mine for a mere $10 USD and a bit of change when Skin79 had a sale however unless you’re in Korea or have Korean connections you’ll have to pay $20 USD and upwards on various sites but I do believe it’s well worth up to $50 USD as it’s a fantastic BB Cream!
All in all loving this one! I’ll be bringing you a review of Skin79 Classics’s formula shortly so keep your eyes peeled!
How about you?
What are your favorite BB Creams?
Tried this one?
Tell the Muse!
What is a BB Cream?
Etude House Magic BB Cream Review
Today I’m bringing you a review of one of my favorite BB creams. I’ve tried many, many BB Creams and I decided that instead of going through a ton of reviews outlining bad ones, good ones, and in between ones, I’d simply bring you ones that I adore.
Understanding the many uses and functions of a BB cream is a long task so I won’t go into great details about what one is for, how to use it, etc….considering that I’ve already done this in a prior post entitled What is a BB Cream?
One of my favorite BB Creams is from Etude House and is called BB Magic Cream, very fitting considering what it does for my complexion is simply magic! Honestly I’d be lying if I denied loving how very cheap Etude House BB Magic Cream is, the appeal of the product is it’s price and excellent quality.
When presented side by side with other BB’s, the Etude House BB Magic Cream has very little fanfare about it which could be one of the reasons I love it so much. It contains only basic functions and isn’t a huge multitasking demon like some BB’s are. This particular cream does not contain SPF, does not contain whitening agents, and does not offer heavy coverage.
The cream comes in one color and adjusts to skin tones of any shade. It come in two separate skin formulas. The formulas available are Pure and Moist, Moist being for dry skin and Pure being for oily skin. Considering my skin is more dry than oily I choose the Moist formula. The formula is a typically heavy BB cream however it does blend out well and creates a good finish which feels somewhat like I’m not wearing any makeup at all. The color was quite dark and beige which had me worried but upon application to my medium fair skin it adjusts accordingly and blends out beautifully well. I’m always somewhat amazed at how heavy feeling most BB Creams are but once they are they feel quite light, lovely, and my skin feels like it’s taking a nice breath of fresh air.
The cream does an excellent job of taking dull skin and brightening it up while creating good coverage for a minimal makeup look. Depending on how much you use, you might run into a problem where you have your skin casts off a certain glare that screams, “I have makeup on!” This is why you should use a very small amount for coverage, one or two small drops should cover your entire face and if you have acne scarring or other items you wish to hide a few more drops should work well at covering these areas. I’m unsure if it’s an ideal solution for someone with heavy problem skin however I do think it’s an excellent choice for those with small to medium problems on their face. It does not manage to cover my eyes very well and I do need to follow up with concealer as you’ll see in my photos below my eyes are looking tired and rough. I depend on my concealer to brighten my eye area, cover small lines, and conceal any puffiness I have in the AM and using this (or any BB Cream) is not an option. I’ve heard many girl’s rave how BB Cream successfully doubles up as their ideal concealer but I’ve used many and never successfully covered my under eye woes. The cream comes in a small squeeze tube with a nifty little attached depressor for pumping the cream out easily, hygienically, and mess-free. The cream has a fresh floral scent as described on the website but honestly I called it old lady perfume smell! Yak! But lucky enough it goes away fairly quickly!
All in all Etude House BB Magic Cream is one of my very favorite BB’s even though it lacks all the bells and whistles other creams have. I like the simplicity of the formula and not having a whole lot of everything thrown into one cream. I also love the fact that it costs $8-$10 USD retail price and I can easily get it since I have a lovely friend in Korea who CP’s for me. I do think it’s worth paying up to $15 USD as it’s a fabulous “beginner” BB cream for those who have never tried BB’s prior.
Etude House BB Magic Cream is Muse Approved for purchase!
In my photo below I am using Etude House BB Magic Cream on a freshly washed face. As you can see it didn’t do a great job of concealing my eyes but it does give my skin quite a good healthy coverage that looks both flawless, natural, pretty, and ready for the rest of blush and other makeup.
How about you?
What are your favorite BB’s?
Got a question about BB’s?
Tell the Muse!
Blemish Balm Cream: What’s a BB Cream?
The Muse’s Honest Opinion on Gmarket
Korean Cosmetic Guide
Etude House Plumping Lip Tint Review
Etude House Eye and Lip Makeup Remover Review
Etude House Spring 2008 Collection Review
A few years ago Bourjois Paris introduced Bons baisers de Paris (Kisses from Paris) which the Muse absolutely fell in love with. These cute little pens that looked like a marker were actually a stain that gave a blush of color to lips! I’ve used many lip and cheek stains in my time but none were every compared to these! The color was soft and not overpowering, they didn’t dry my lips out, the application was simple, and the packaging was ideal! Sadly, somewhere along the line Bourjois Paris diced Bons baisers de Paris from it’s line up and the Muse has never seen them again!
T’was a sad day indeed!
I recently came across a similiar style of pen from a Korean brand entitled Missha. The Missha Tinted Lip Marker is pretty much a perfect duplicate of the Bourjois Paris version so the Muse of course needed to try them for herself! Turns out these little markers perform the same functions as the Bourjois Paris and are a perfect dupe plus accessible in the Missha main catalog! Joy! Bless be! The Muse’s excitement can be heard far and wide.
I recently asked a friend to pick me up the two available colors and I was so excited to finally get them I nearly cried…just nearly…
The only thing I could possibly rant about would be the lack of colors. Sadly the color selection is narrowed down to two shades where as the Bourjois Paris version had a total of four shades but aside from that they function pretty much the exact same way!
The colors available are a red pink and a pale pink which match perfectly with my lip shade. They don’t overpower my lips are making them look abnormal. The color is a simple, natural stain that adds a bit of pop to my normal, natural lip shade. I simply smooth onto my lips with the felt tip and I’m left with a beautiful flush of color. They don’t dry my lips out and they color literally lasts for hours at a time! With a bit of gloss I have a very natural looking lip that’s flattering and pretty!
I know of quite a few brands who have done a similar style stain such as mark, Pixie, Sephora, even Urban Decay and believe you me I’ve tried them all but none have successfully created such a great product as Missha and Bourjois Paris has! The lightness of the stain creates such a natural flush that’s not quite been duplicated by these other brands!
I paid retail for these so they cost around $8 USD or so but I have seen them on E-bay for about $12 USD or so and truly they are well worth it!
The Muse loves ‘em and approves ‘em for purchase! Try looking on E-bay or ask a mate in Korea to nab you some! Well worth your cash!
Muse Approved for purchase all the way!
How about you?
Love lip stains?
What do you use to stain your lips?
Tell the Muse!
Stila Step Out and Shine Review Featuring Stila Pomegranate Lip and Cheek Stain
Etude House Kissful Tint Chou Review
Pop Apple the Cheeks Lip and Cheek Stain Review
Tarte Berry Couture Giftset Review
Benefit Posietint Review
Rimmel Lip Bloomer Review
Japan’s Answer to Benetint
Albion Eprise Water Face Color Review
I wanted to address G-Market today in a post since I get many, many, many e-mails asking me about it, have I ever used it, what’s it like, how do I use it, etc….
Instead of the hassle of going through 200 or more e-mails on the topic I thought a post would be appropriate in answering the questions I get daily about it.
I’ve been collecting Korean Cosmetics for about a two years, possibly a year and a half, unsure exactly when I started. I get asked daily where I get my Korean makeup and the answer is I have a friend who lives in Seoul (the largest city and capital of South Korean) who ships me over random items that I ask her to purchase for me.
I have not seen anyone else aside from E-bay and Gmarket who sell Korean Cosmetics. I haven’t really seen many stores in Manhattan either that carry Korean makeup but maybe I am looking in the wrong locations. If I do come across a shop that carry the lines they are normally very out of date items.
If you live within a heavily populated Asian community you my be lucky enough to have a few Japanese, Korean, Chinese specialty shops that carry cosmetics from abroad.
If you’re unfamiliar with Gmarket allow me to briefly explain.
Gmarket is much like E-bay however instead of bidding on items you are purchasing them out right for buy it now prices. All items are priced extremely low and as close to retail as anything I’ve seen on the Internet and many popular brands I’ve discussed at Musings such as Etude House, Banila Co, VOV, etc…can be located at retail prices on Gmarket.
Even though Gmarket prices are amazing I have some rants about the service which is why I do not recommend using it unless you have a ton of cash to spare.
I’ve tried Gmarket twice and have noticed a few problems with the service and they are as follows:
Virtually no Customer Service at all.
During my first order I had some confusion of whether the funds I sent over actually went through so I decided to shoot over an inquiry about my order. This was 3 months ago and still they have not replied. Lucky enough the order arrived safely but having my money hang out in limbo while no one replies stinks.
No English speaking reps or members.
I don’t believe anyone that works for Gmarket or anyone who is a registered member that is selling speaks in English. I’ve successfully contacted a seller when asking a question only to receive a reply in Korean. This wasn’t a problem as I had someone translate it for me however if you’re virtually clueless about the Korean language this can be frustrating. This leads me to believe that the reps that work at Gmarket, run Gmarket, Etc…do not speak English either. Although Gmarket has a English sub-site I don’t believe anyone technically speaks English.
Shipping Prices are obscene at first glance!
Now shipping via Gmarket is fairly reasonable however as you add items into your cart from other sellers or even one particular seller the price goes up and up and up and up! This figure is a set estimate and you’ll later receive a credit on the shipping amount however it’s ridiculous having to set out $40, $60, or more dollars when you have 8-10 items in your cart! As mentioned you do get a credit however that credit is not put back into your Paypal account it’s set as G-Cash for spending on Gmarket. If you so choose you can transfer it back to Paypal but it won’t be worth it as they deduct a considerable amount in fees to do this!
Shipping, Paypal, and Other Woes….
Gmarket ships fairly quickly however the interface on Gmarket has a huge learning curve and I don’t think, after using it twice so far for orders, I even understand how it works! Figuring out where my money is, where my order is, when it shipped, how to track it, etc…is like brain surgery! The site isn’t user friendly in my opinion! Now when paying via Paypal can be quite a bit of a nail biting experience as waiting for the funds to go through, etc…makes me slightly nervous as my Paypal sits in limbo for 2-3 days. On top of this waiting for your credit back, for shipping, takes a fair few days. I just get a tad bit nervous when my money is sitting around and not doing anything!
All in all I currently avoid Gmarket like the plague and do all my Korean Cosmetics via CP purchases from my friend. If I can’t get items from her I tend to look around E-bay and see what pops up cheap! I don’t recommend using Gmarket if you get antsy about your money the way I do. I also don’t recommend it because of the silly estimated shipping fee problem!
The Muse suggests asking around MUA or on Asian based Forums for a CP. Be friendly, make a friend, and I’m positive they’ll be happy to help you get what you need from Korea! Don’t forget to offer to return the favor!
Hope this answers all your questions about Gmarket!
If you have further questions, ask away in comment field!
An Intro to Korean Cosmetic Brands
What is a BB Cream?
A Guide to Shopping for Japanese Cosmetics
JPMon Ordering Tutorial
Indonesian Cosmetic Brands
I absolutely love staining my lips and cheeks! Stains work so well at giving a natural, flushed looks to both lips and cheeks.
I’m particularly partial to staining my lips prior to gloss as it gives that extra pop to gloss! One of my very favorite products for staining my lips was from Bourjois Paris and came in a pen applicator! I was so sad they stopped carrying these soon after their original release.
I’ve since been through a slew of stains but I’ve located a new favorite when I recently purchased Etude House 55 Kissful Tint Chou!
Etude House 55 Kissful Tint Chou is available in four shades which are a pink, red, orange, and sheer pink.
I tried the red shade only but I’ll be going back shortly for more colors as it’s a very good stain. The stain comes in a cute little tube with squeeze applicator. Dab a small amount on your finger and smooth on or apply directly from the tube. The formula is a silicon like texture that smooths on dry and leaves behind a pinch of color bringing blah lips to life with a beautiful flush of red! This is beautiful with or without gloss! I like the interesting texture as although it’s a gel formula it still feels rather dry when applied which makes it ideal for lips as it doesn’t apply in a streaky mess! The stain lasts for a good four hours or so before fading even when drinking or eating which is great as all I have to do is touch up my gloss and go as my lips are already nicely flushed with color!
As you can see below the color choice I made was quite red however I thought it looked quite natural on and not scary or kool-aid like in appearance. My lips are quite red already however this enhances the natural color of my lips!
I really liked this one and it’s one of Etude House’s better items. It also happens to be extremely cheap at $4 USD. I paid retail price as I have a friend in Korea who purchased it for me however I’ve seen it on E-bay ranging from $9.99-$12.99 USD and I think it’s well worth that price even though the tube is tiny!
I’m Muse Approving this one! Definately loves it!
Do you stain your lips?
How about your cheeks?
Tell the Muse!
The Muse Appears in Etude House’s Newsletter
Etude House Plumping Lip Tint Review
Etude House Aqua Sherbet Skincare Review
Etude House Lash Designing Vitcara Mascara Review
Included in it’s Fall Collection Etude House released a Plumping Lip Tint which I’m lovinggggg at the moment!
These glosses are new to the Etude House line up and I believe LE but don’t quote me on that! They come in two shade selections both of which are sheer but give a nice tiny hint of color to the lips.
I love both shades and I’m happy I indulged in purchasing both as they are high quality items for the price and offer a brilliant glossy layer to my favorite lip stain or lipstick or of course, they look rather gorgeous alone as well. The formula is an emollient, moisturizing and quite thick gloss which gives the illusion of plumped, fuller lips. Each gloss is flavored in a cool, tingly minty bubblegum taste which, for me, a lover of flavored glosses, is quite nice!
The glosses come with the typical spatula style applicator many Asian brands favor and which I totally love as it’s great for layering gloss on and getting a nice even finish plus it’s easy to clean up prior to placing back into the tube.
The colors available are pink and red but neither is very pigmented however since the gloss contains a fair amount of tingly goodness you can expect to get a certain pink or reddish tone to lips due to this. Over bare lips the gloss looks natural, glossy, and lovely. Over your favorite lip stain or lipstick the gloss creates a sexy mirror finish that’s gorgeous!
At under around $5 USD each the price is terribly right and they work almost as great as my favorite plumping gloss of all time, DuWop Lip Venom.
The Muse likes ‘em and approved ‘em!
Definitely a nice addition to my gloss collection!
What are your favorite plumping glosses?
Feeling like plumping glosses are over hyped?
Tell the Muse!
Enjoy more reviews from Etude House’s Fall Collection by visiting some past reviews!
Etude House Face Designing Brightener Review
Etude House Brightening Eyes Duo Review
You may have noticed when I review collections, it’s normally a group event. I take all or most of the pieces and review each item in one big blog entry!
This week I’m switching things up a tiny little bit and doing things different by bringing you Etude House’s Fall Collection in a review a day from the items released.
I didn’t indulge in all the items but I do think I got the best of the lot of items introduced so each day, for the next week, you’ll see one item from the collection reviewed!
Today I’m starting out the review process by covering Etude House Face Designing Brightener Face Powder which is a gorgeous highlighting powder.
The powder is a cream color with a light pink under base that has a tiny hint of shimmer and a slightly iridescent finish. The powder is a rather nice item for adding a lovely finish as a final step in your makeup application. It doesn’t really brighten the face but leaves more of a soft focused glow. Although the powder contains a bit of shimmer you can’t see it on your face once applied and all that’s left behind is a subtle glow that’s very flattering and natural.
Directions for use suggest using the powder on the t-zone and under the eyes. I liked the idea of brushing it under my eyes and it works a treat as lightening up dark circles and giving a rather nice finish to the area after concealer use however it’s a bit too shimmery for my t-zone area so I decided to use it on the apples of my cheeks and up the contour of my face which was much better at creating that natural finish.
The powder has a sweet little star emblem embedded into it which goes deep enough to last a while before it disappears. This comes in a very slim, slick little compact that sports a kawaii feel do to the cutesy lettering on the top in elaborate script. At 11,000 won the price is quite nice as well and pretty inexpensive for such a cute item.
This one I liked alot. The price is great, the packaging is quite cute, and the effect on my face was lovely! I’m glad I purchased this as I was slightly up in arms whether I needed another highlighting powder but it was so inexpensive and has the quality to back it up I’m happy I indulged.
I’ll be reviewing more of Etude House’s Fall Collection shortly so stay tuned!
Etude House Fall Collection 2008
Etude House Aqua Sherbet Skincare Review
Etude House Brightening Eyes Duo Review
Etude House Plumping Lip Tint Review
VOV takes ages to update it’s official site however I came across these rather awesome palettes entitled Castledew Diecut Eyes. I’m unsure if the palettes are new as they aren’t displayed on the VOV site, either way they do look very nice and I’m debating on purchasing them.
Since I’ve been slightly disappointed with the couple of VOV palettes I have purchased I’m kinda wary of dishing out money for these but the price is really cheap at 12,980 won so I may just indulge and see if I get lucky!
Aren’t they gorgeous?
Each palette contains nine shades and two applications enclosed in the typical VOV mirror compact.
They look lovely but as I said I’ve been disappointed before by VOV and color payoff on their other Castledew palettes has been mediocre at best!
But who knows they might be great!
Tell the Muse!
Banila Co has updated it’s site with it’s brand new Fall Collection entitled De La Couture. Expect more mini stories from Banila Co after this as they tend to do many small releases over the course of several months.
De La Couture consists of new shades of popular items in new packaging design especially for the Fall. Banila Co has obviously gone with a warmer, nude look for the Fall where as many companies are lending a hand to metallics and vampy looks.
The palette looks like a particularly nice item with shades of pink, brown, gold, and green. This retails for 22,000 won.
Two new shades of the popular marble eyeshadow duos are also available in new packaging for Fall. These are 8,500 won each and in a gold version and a grey version.
The popular Secret Blush/Highlighter has a new shade for Fall which appears to be a light peach shimmering shade. This retails for 18,000 won and is available in the new Fall packaging design as well to match the shadows and eye palette.
The lipsticks released are all nudey peach shades to compliment the neutral shades of the collection.
Although the packaging is extremely nice I doubt I’ll be purchasing any of the items aside from the palette (and that’s only a maybe on the palette!) as I have my eye on other Koran cosmetics I’ve been wanting.
All in all if you’re a lover of naturals and nudes this is definately appealing!
Loving the colors?
Tell the Muse!
Missha is a Korean brand that makes a wide variety of cosmetics and skincare. Many of their items are quite good and higher end in comparison to other Korean brands such as Etude House (although for me Etude House remains in my top five favorites list).
I purchased Missha’s Shimmering Oven Blush a few months ago and have been using it off and on. One of the key selling points for me was the amazing packaging. The blush comes in a huge metallic pink compact which opens to reveal the shimmering highlighting powder. This comes with a generous size brush which is super soft and fits the contour of your cheek perfectly so it’s fairly goof proof getting the powder on correctly.
Although it’s name suggests that this is a blush, I think it’s safe to say that it does not work as a blush but more as a highlighting shimmering powder. The powder isn’t as silky as I’d prefer which is both good and bad. Good, since it doesn’t create a mess as you swipe across it with the brush and you’re not picking up a ton of product that you’re later left shaking out and wasting. Bad, because you have to work a fair deal to get a decent size amount on the brush.
The best way to use this is to apply your blush as normal and proceed to follow up with the Missha Shimmering Over Blush to highlight your cheekbones and face. If you prefer you can dip a sponge applicator into the powder and apply on the highbrow area of your eye for a bit of a shimmering highlight or all over the lid of your eye for a light shadow wash.
The effect on the cheeks is just a really sheer shimmer of pink powder that gives your face subtle glow but nothing too dramatic. This is particularly a great powder if you’d like to add a bit of luminescence to your cheek bones without over doing it with tons of sparkle and shimmer.
The powder comes in three shades selections, a white marble, a peach marble, and the one I got in pink. These retail for 17,800 won but I got mine for 14,000 won or so as the day my friend purchased it the website was having a sell at 20% off.
The packaging along makes this a winner item however the formula does need a tiny bit of work to get the Muse’s full approval on it. The price is right, the packaging is wonderful, but the formula could use a little work, I like it alot but I’m not loving it.
Visit Missha’s website at the following locations:
US Portal (Missha US only offers very basic options from the original line up available in Asian countries)
Looking for more ways to brighten up your face? Check out some past highlighter reviews!
Eyeko Touch Up & Glow Highlighter Review
Laneige Snow Radiant Blusher Review
Stila Illuminating Finishing Powder Review
Majolica Majolica Holiday 2007 Review featuring Snow Carat Powder
See tons of shimmering products in my Ghosts of Christmas Past Round Up Review
Bobbi Brown Limited Edition Shimmerbrick in Pink Quartz Review
Guerlain Forever Gold Face of the Day
Holy cow it was SO humid here in the city on Saturday YAK! I was out with friends and wandering around 34th Street Saturday so I had the chance to put my new Beauty Credit Lovely Powder Pact Matt to the test!
It was pretty darn humid but as the morning turned to afternoon we got major rain fall so my Beauty Credit Lovely Powder Pact Matt was put to the test for sure! Since humidity brings out oily, shiny skin for me this was a great excuse to try out this new powder.
First off the Muse is loving the cute packaging as always Beauty Credit went out of it’s way to create a unique, cute, and pretty package. The powder comes in a silver compact with the Beauty Credit rocking horse emblem on the cover and embedded in the powder itself. Honestly, as cute as the compact is I’m most impressed with the little lid that covers the powder and allows you to place your puff on top. Little things like this always please me to no end as it shows alot of love and consideration went into the making of the product. I simply hate it when companies make an awesome powder and proceed to have no place to put your sponge BUT on top of the powder. It makes a mess doing this plus the mirror gets powder all over it…yak! Total disaster! Lucky for us Beauty Credit kept all these things in mind and proceeded to address them by having a little protective cover for the powder! Perfect!
This particular powder is available in three shade selection all of which contain a good amount of beige to tone down yellow tones. Although the formula is most flattering to Asian skin tones anyone else can easily get away with using this! I always find powders from Japan and Korea an interesting texture thats both light and offers good coverage. In this case the Lovely Powder Pact in Matt is a mattifying powder which is perfect for full coverage if you don’t have a ton to hide. It offers a transparent coverage that gives a very natural finish which is perfect for lighter coverage, touch ups, or to tame shine and oil!
Like most powders of it’s kind this needs a touch up or two after about four to five hours of wear depending on how oily your skin gets. I used my powder as an all over foundation with a bit of blush for my outing on Saturday and through humidity and rain it lasted quite a while before needing a touch up.
Completed look using Beauty Credit Lovely Powder Pact Matt as my foundation with a little bit of Bare Escentuals Blush in Fruit Cocktail
I think the price on this is a key selling point at £7 which is truly a wonderful price tag for a very nice powder.
All in all I love this powder and I’m slapping a Muse Approval on it for purchase! How cute will you be whipping this out of your purse for touch ups!?
Visit Beauty Credit Cosmetics
Tried it before?
Tell the Muse!
Beauty Credit Lovely Q10 Pearl Shine Review
Beauty Credit Lovely Q10 Makeup Fitting Gel Review
Learn more about Beauty Credit Cosmetics