Make-up Reviews

Lipstick Queen Oxymoron Matte Gloss Review and Swatches

Oxymoron: A rhetorical figure in which incongruous or contradictory terms are combined, as in a deafening silence and a mournful optimist.

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Lipstick Queen scores again with her incredible Oxymoron Matte Gloss!

Click ahead for it.

Lipstick Queen Oxymoron Matte Gloss contradicts itself with a smooth, sheer formula that wears like a gloss but has the finish of a matte lipstick. With incredible vintage Gorey-like illustrations on the packaging this matte gloss is chic and multitasking for cheeks and lips.

I know I’m one of those that falls into the category of being deadly scared of matte lipstick…well ok..I admit it…matte anything scares the hell out of me. Matte colors be it shadow, lipstick, or other proves a difficult medium to work with as it’s particularly a daunting task to blend and apply correctly. No worries Lipstick Queen Oxymoron Gloss is creamy, moisturizing, blends flawless onto cheeks or lips, and leaves behind pigmented color that’s flattering, healthy, natural, and very pretty. Possibly one of the best matte formulas I’ve had the pleasure of working with.

Not unlike that of Stila Convertible Color compact these glosses are long wearing on your face for a fresh burst of color. The formula is slightly tacky and holds a certain stickiness to it but applies like a dream to cheeks leaving behind just the right amount of color. That tack in the formula allows the product to remain on cheeks for a nice, long wear especially in humid, hot weather!

As for lips, the gloss comes with a decent enough lip brush (if you have your own you might like to use that) for application. Shhh I tend to apply with a finger tip, gives me more control, just be sure you use nice clean finger tips before dipping it into the compact! The gloss smooths onto lips easily leaving behind very pigmented color with a tiny hint of subtle glossiness that contradicts that of the very matte finish. I noticed the formula was a bit drying on my lips but not over much however those with VERY dry lips should probably prep well prior to use and perhaps add a bit of gloss on top to prevent the gloss from feathering or drying lips out further.

The shades I tried are quite similar in color with very slight differences. Free Ride is a nude peach where as Honest Politician brown rose shade. On my lips and cheeks I didn’t notice much difference between the two shades but regardless both were flattering.

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In the photos below I am wearing the gloss on my lips and cheeks!

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Overall, with it’s ability to act as a blusher and a lip gloss (or lipstick if you please), Lipstick Queen Oxymoron Matte Gloss is worthy of a check out. As with many of her products I’ve tried I find I’m not disappointed and quite impressed. Very good stuff and worthy of my Muse Approval.

summer museapproved stamp

Anyone a lover?

Tried it?

Love it?

Tell the Muse!

Lipstick Queen Oxymoron Matte Gloss is available via Lipstick Queen’s website for $20 each.

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Cover FX Natural FX Water Based Foundation Review

If it’s extra coverage you desire in a thick, creamy formula, Cover FX Natural FX Water Based Foundation may be what your skin seeks!


Jump ahead to hear the review.

Available in a generous size tube, I do mean generous as a little goes a long way, with an SPF 15, Cover FX Natural FX Water Based Foundation is a good start to creating flawless skin.

I’ve been muddling around with this for a week and I’ve finally decided it’s a solid foundation that I really like. The formula is a thick, creamy moisturizing base not unlike that of a tinted moisturizer but no where near as runny. You can 1. wear it on it’s own or 2. mix some in with your moisturizer for a more dewy finish. It could be considered drying to some but simple prepping and priming prior to use will get you an even, easy to blend finish.


The foundation is rich and heavily pigmented so a tiny bit goes a very long way. Although Cover FX advertises it as sheer to medium coverage I do believe you can take it one step further and go with full coverage. I’ve found prepping is key for applying any Cover FX products so be sure to use a gentle exfoliater prior to use, followed up with a light serum or moisturizer, and finally a primer.

On my dry skin the product works best when mixed with a drop of moisturizer and applied by hand however if my skin decides it wants to be oily I find application with a sponge easier particularly a slightly damp one. Coverage is quite flawless and evens out skin beautifully well hiding minor to heavier skin problems such as acne scarring, redness, etc….coverage feels very light without the heaviness of the actual product.


I have M40 here and I think I need a little bit lighter as this was a tad too orange on my face however it still managed to even out my skin tone, erase dullness, and even acted as a concealer due to it’s heavy pigmentation.

Overall, quite a great foundation particularly for those who have problem skin or have a need to cover up more.

Anyone try?

Tell the Muse!

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Too Faced Fall Collection 2009: Too Faced Natural Eye Palette Review and Swatches

Last year I fell in love with the Too Faced Smoky Eye Palette and this year isn’t any different with the introduction of the Too Faced Natural Eye Palette, incredible, truly a fabulous palette and a killer deal!


Jump ahead for some raving!

I’ve been known to hate all over a natural, nude eye look but my tastes have evolved since I started this little site and with those changes came the revelation that I do enjoy a natural eye look. With a total of nine shades, three tutorials, and a brush, all packaged together, Too Faced Natural Eye Palette arms you with just about everything you’ll need to create three natural, nude looks or any number of looks using the nine shades. This style palette is ideal for anyone who either loves neutrals or isn’t so handy with eye shadow application. It’s ease of use and nifty little tutorial cards make it’s a snap to create a flawless eye look sans drama.


The palette is a sweet flip top box with full size mirror and pull out draw with one dual applicator that includes a sponge on one side and a liner brush on the other. As per my rant last year I will say that I hate they don’t include at least three sponges with the kit as it would be great to use one brush per shadow look. The kit also includes a sleeve which houses three little business card size tutorials with three simple steps for creating a Day, Fashion, and Classic Eye look. The instructions are simple and easy to understand and for the most part one sentence tells you what to do. Believe me if I can follow the instructions you’ll be able to without any problem. The instructions make it very easy to create dramatic neutral looks that are beautifully flattering for Fall.


The shades in the palette are as follows:

Day Look
Heaven (Matte Cream)
Velvet Revolvor (Matte Nude)
Sexpresso (Matte Brown

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To create the Day Look you simply sweet Heaven all over the line and blend Velvet Revolver into the crease to contrast. Finish the look by blending Sexpresso on the upper and lower lash line for a smudged out liner effect. The results of the completed look are a work friendly subtle neutral eye look.

Fashion Look
Nude Beach (Shimmering Beige Peach)
Honey Pot (Coppery Bronze)
Cocoa Puff (Shimmering Golden Brown)

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When compared to Day, Fashion Look is considerably more dramatic. To create the look you’ll be using nude Beach as a high brow highlighter and blended into the crease. Follow up with Honey Pot patted on the inner lid and around the tear duct and complete with Cocoa Puff blended on the out lid, crease, and upper and lower lash lines. Although completely work friendly, Fashion Look manages to have the drama of a night time look as well!

Classic Look
Silk Teddy (Nude Shimmering Peach)
Push-Up (Light Shimmering Brown)
Erotica (Grayish Brown with Golden Sparkle)

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The Classic Look is probably the most dramatic of all the looks with a blend of bronze and brown to create a very smoky, nude look. To achieve the look you’ll blend Silky Teddy from crease to brow and gently press Push Up onto the lid. Follow up by smudging Erotica on crease and lower lashes.

All three looks are very pretty and flattering on my brown eyes. It’s fun following the card step by step but nothing is stopping you from using the shades individually or combined to create any number of looks. Nine shadows is alot of color so I’m sure you can let your imagination run wild to create some other interesting looks. All the shadows in the palette are brilliantly pigmented and rich in texture. Finishes range from shimmery, matte, to velvet and blend like a dream.

Overall, the Too Faced Natural Eye Palette is an absolute steal at $34 and a Fall must have for creating natural or dramatic eye popping looks. I really love this one and I’m deeply impressed. Quite a great little palette for not only makeup amateurs and beginners but also those who are well versed in makeup application.

A gem!

Loves it!

Muse Approval for purchase!

summer museapproved stamp

You won’t regret adding this one to your collection, likey!

Anyone haul this yet?

Wanting to?

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Nars Orgasm Dupe: Aromaleigh Pure Rouge Blush Verve Review

You’d never know that Aromaleigh Pure Rouge Blush in Verve would make a fine dupe for NARS Orgasm just by looking at them, swatching the two side by side, or sitting them together. But Verve is indeed quite a nice dupe of Orgasm and possibly more flattering (and definitely more cheaper)


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With a price tag of $14.25 ($10.69 on sale now) you can deduct nearly half the price of NARS Orgasm from this little pot of joy. Not quite pink and not all peach but a cross between the two makes Verve a good dupe contender for one of my favorite blushes from NARS, Orgasm.


Although considerably more shimmery and a tad bit on the dirty warm red side, Verve applies to cheeks with a blend of pinks and peaches. The formula is a finely milled powder with a shimmery finish that blends onto cheeks beautifully. The undertones of pink cool the color down from it’s dominant base of peach. It’s a unique shade that can be easily be mistaken for Orgasm once applied but with better pigmentation.


If you’re looking for a cheaper alternative to $25 NARS Orgasm (it’s not an identical twin mind you but not a bad try!) this is one to try. Cheap, pigmented, and pretty it’s a beautiful shade for Summer!

Likey!

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Beauty Battle: MAC 224 Versus MAC 217

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Gather round kids time to battle some brushes! I get alot of questions about which is the best blending brush for creating good eye looks. When I first started out with MAC I was recommended two brushes from a Specktra member that changed my life (and I’m sure yours if you own them). The 217 and 224 are recommended far and wide by MAC lovers everywhere as the perfect brush for blending color to a fine finish. They are two of my very favorite brushes and I probably wouldn’t want to face the makeup world without either.

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Placing them in the ring together to battle it out isn’t such a fine idea as they are both very good brushes and should both be in your arsenal but who follows rules anyway! Might as well stir thing up.

Our beauty battle will begin after the jump as I pit the MAC 224 up against the MAC 217. Who’ll be the victor? You’ll see have to read to find out more!

As I mentioned above both the MAC 224 and the MAC 217 are incredible blending brushes but of course one has to be the winner in this battle. Which will it be?

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In this corner we have the MAC 224 which is a fluffy shadow brush specifically designed to blend out shadow color particularly in the crease. I wouldn’t recommend it for applying color directly to the lid but it’s a treat for blending shadow out especially if your contrasting shadow within the crease or towards the V of the eye. I reach for it often when blending and find it does a very good job of gently blending color together without creating a muddy mess. It’s $28.50 price tag is well worth it however the MAC 217 has a bit of an advantage with a cheaper price tag.

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The MAC 217 is smaller compared to the 224 with fluffy bristles that are just a bit more denser. It works incredibly well at blending within the crease or all over the eye. It’s small size makes it a shoe in for fitting over the eye socket for a seamless blend. At $22.50 it’s $5.50 less than $28.50. With it’s cheaper price tag and ability to blend colors evenly while fitting nicely into the curve of the eye this could prove to be a major kick in the 224′s face.

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Picking between two incredible brushes like these is a difficult task but I award the final knockdown to the MAC 217. It’s smaller size fits my crease quite well and allows me to blend easily without creating fall out which I find happens with the 224. It fits neatly all over my eye particularly my crease. It blends shadow like a dream and allows me to press as lightly or as hard as I like without having to worry about screwing up the entire eye look I am trying to accomplish. For the most part I think it’s advantage is the smaller length of the bristles when compared to the longer ones of the 224. For controlled application and blending the 217 wins this beauty battle hands down!

What do you think?

Does the MAC 217 or the MAC 224 win your beauty battle?

Tell the Muse!

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