Sunday, November 19, 2017

I.A.M...Custom Color Cosmetics: Costa Rican Collection, Grimm Holoday Duo, and IAMCCC 4th B-Day Duo

Press Samples

Greetings, dear readers! I know this post title is quite a mouthful, but I, A.M...Custom Color Cosmetics (IAMCCC) is releasing a variety of collections and duos on Black Friday (THIS FRIDAY! WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE?). I have all the goodies to share with you in this post. There is a fair bit to get through, so let me keep the chit chat short and dive in! Ready? Let's do this!

Costa Rican Collection

This winter, IAMCCC continues on with her Travelogue Series with a trip to Costa Rica. Unfortunately, I've never had the opportunity to visit myself, but these polishes certainly make me want to visit sooner rather than later!

Arenal Springs
Two coats plus top coat

A Mint ultra holo with iridescent color shifting blue flakies and shimmers. Arenal is an active volcano that creates these amazing hot springs and they are a huge tourist destination in the center of the country. The waters are minty green even at night and just spectacular!

I'm definitely jumping in one of my favorite shades from this collection! I have a weakness for mint shades, but oftentimes the formula leaves a lot to be desired. I was thoroughly impressed with just how easily this polish applied to my nails! I have no issues to report with this beauty.

Retail: $8

Cerveza and Lizards
Two coats plus top coat

A green to yellow thermal with copper shimmers, flakies, holo glitters and flecks. This is inspired by a pizzeria that had a huge Imperial beer sign with a little Lizard on it. Lit up at night you could only see the little lizard outlined. It was a sight to behold. Because every time we passed it you could see a lizard on it. 

This is another one of my favorites from the collection! On my nails, I found the warm state to be more of a chartreuse than a yellow, but that may vary with different skin tones. Whether in the warm or cool state, the flakies pop so perfectly against the background! This was another shade with a great formula.

Retail: $8

Glowing Waters
Two coats plus top coat

A Navy ultra holo with tons of shimmers, iridescent flakies and UCC flakies. This is a type of algae that when hit, glows bright blue. I don’t usually like going in the ocean at night but this was too cool to not play in. It allowed you to see the bottom of the water. This was right outside the house on the beach we had rented in Tamarindo.

I really like this take on the ocean as it's different from the more common tropical blue (which I still love!). I have never been to Costa Rica, but I would love to see the glowing algae one day! Glowing Waters has great formula with easy application. It is quite pigmented, and while I needed two coats for opacity, those that paint with a heavier hand may find this to be a one coater.

Retail: $8

Night Monkeys
Two coats (base) plus top coat
Added one coat topper on two middle nails plus topper

A black ultra Holo with silver flakies and micro glitters. Includes a mini bottle of micro silver holo stars and micro holo flakies. This is a memory I have of being passed out in the back of the car on our way from Arenal to Tamarindo. This was before smart phones so we relied on maps and locals. What should have been a 3-4 hour drive took 12 hours because what was a road on the map became a torrent of a river in reality.  In pitch black and the middle of the Costa Rican jungles, the road is riddled with pot holes, the size of the car itself. I was half dazed and passed out when we hit one of these pot holes that I was awakened and screamed “Monkeys!” about which I had been dreaming. You could hear them all over the forest. I’m not sure why I remember this so vividly but at like 3 in the morning, it was pretty hilarious. 

This is a gorgeous black polish that is perfection for the holidays! Whether you want to keep it more simple, but still dazzling, or add a little extra sparkle complete with stars, this is sure to be a hit for at your holiday parties! The base shade applied easily for me without any issues, and I applied the topper on my two middle nails with my dab and swish method. The topper does have limited amount of stars, and I did have to dig a couple extra out for placement on my nails.

Retail: $8

Playa Conchal
Three coats plus top coat

A pastel creamsicle with blue, red, purple iridescent color shifting flakies and shimmer. This is inspired by a beautiful shell beach ( playa conchal means shell beach in spanish) about a mile down the beach from were we stayed in Tamarindo.

Playa Conchal is a great colour combination, but it is a little on the thicker side due to the added flakies. I recommend painting with a very light hand for easier application and just build up slowly rather than trying to get full coverage with thicker coats. The final result is exquisite and definitely worth the extra bit of patience!

Retail: $8

Plantain Muffins
Two coats plus top coat

A mid tone purple holo with tons of blue, purple, red and green iridescent color shifting flakies.  Every morning in Tamarindo we walked to this little breakfast spot that was simply amazing. It was this one local woman cooking out of her house and one of the amazing goodies she had were Plantain Muffins. They may have been red bananas but they were purple and thats what she called them.

This is such a stunning polish, and the iridescent flakies really makes this polish pop! The formula was really great and easy to work with; you will not be disappointed with this beauty!

Retail: $8


Grimm Holodays

This year's holiday duo is inspired by none other than the Grimm's brothers! IAMCCC will have these polishes available separately should you only want one of these beautiful shades, or you can pick up the duo for a discount.

Mother Hölle
Two coats plus top coat

A white holo with blue iridescent shimmers and flakies. Mother Hölle is said to be the reason it snows.  You can read it here for free.

I don't wear white polishes often, but I do love them this time of year. Unfortunately my camera wasn't quite able to capture the full beauty of this polish: the blue shimmers are more obvious in person. The formula is a little on the thicker side due to the flakies, but overall, I found the application to be quite smooth.

Retail: $8 each or $15 for the duo

The Golden Goose
Two coats plus top coat

An antiqued golden ultra holo with UCC flakies. This is a fun story that kind of males you wonder where and why these stories came about. You can read it here for free.

The Golden Goose is a great polish for when you want a gold that isn't quite so "in your face" as many others I've seen. The flakies add an almost textured appearance although the final application is pretty smooth on the nails. This is another shade that could potentially be a one coater if you paint with a heavier hand.

Retail: $8 each or $15 for the duo


IAMCCC 4th B-Day Duo

Happy 4 years to I, A.M...Custom Color Cosmetics! To celebrate, IAMCCC is releasing a 4 year Indie-versary duo. Each of these polishes can be purchased separately if you have a preference for just one shade, or you can order than both for a discount.

Cali Dreaming
Two coats plus top coat

A neon creme pinky coral inspired by the Mama’s and the Papa’s song.

I know these photos are on the darker side, but the lower light setting made for much more accurate colours. The formula of this cream polish is really smooth and easy to apply. While I only needed two coats for opacity, some readers may find they need a third depending on how it is applied.

Retail: $6 each or $15 for the duo

Crab Nebula
Three coats plus top coat

An ultra chameleon chrome shifting polish with iridescent color shifting flakies and UCC flakies that shift from blue/green/purple/gold. This color looked like space to me so space it became.

Some of my favorite IAMCCC polishes are the Crab varieties, so I'm not even the least bit surprised that Crab Nebula is joining that list. The formula is on point, and the colour shifts are glorious!

Retail: $10 each or $15 for the duo

And this, dear readers, concluded today's blog post! As I mentioned previously, all of these polishes will be launching on Black Friday on the I, A.M...Custom Color Cosmetics website.

Have you enjoyed this year's Travelogue Series? What sort of inspiration/series are you hoping to see IAMCCC go with next year? Ashlie always comes up with interesting ideas for her yearly series, so I look forward to seeing what 2018 brings the brand! Are there any favorite shades in this blog post? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!
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Saturday, November 18, 2017

This Week's Beauty Spotlight

If you're on the fence about the new Urban Decay Heavy Metals Palette, read Prime Beauty's review and check out the swatches!

Curious about Charlotte Tilbury foundations? Or the new limited edition Instant Eye Palette. Check out Polarbelle's Get Ready With Me video featuring a The Makeup Show LA haul.

Pammy Blogs Beauty is embarking on some skincare device testing with the Labelle Ultrasonic Skin Spatula from Trophy Skin. Find out how she is liking it so far!

Stacie from Makeup Obsessed Momtried the new It Cosmetics Life Changing Eye and Cheek palette. See what she thinks and go enter to win one of these for yourself too.

It is no secret that Lola's Secret Beauty Blog is especially impressed by, and in love with, African Botanics luxury green skincare, and is therefore enthusiastically sharing a few of their brand new skincare gems. These luxe masterpieces are the perfect way to ring in the new year with healthy skincare products.

Ever heard of a booster for eye creams? Allison from Never Say Die Beauty discovered Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Eye Concentrate, and loves what this unique eye pretreatment does to firm her lids and help her eye cream work better!

Just in time for holiday season Sally Hansen has created an Enchanted Gem nail collection. Beauty Info Zone shares two of the rich shades with love.

Don't think you have time for a little at home spa pampering? Aveeno has the solution and Christa from Realizing Beauty shares how we can find a little moment for me.

It's Party Time at Beauty Judy. Judy wants to know which of the beautiful Zoya Party Girls polishes is your favorite.

Jen aka The Jedi Wife shares with us a great holiday gift idea that is a spin off from the traditional body wash: a body wash infused buffer! If you’re stuck trying to come up with ideas for your favorite bathing beauties, or you just want that little something extra to make your gift extra special, a visit with Spongellé just may be what Santa ordered!

Beauty isn't just skin deep. It starts from within. Taneja's Bride shares her experience with Nature Made Adult Gummies and shares 3 simple steps to maintaining ourselves.

15 Minute Beauty is sharing her Christmas Beauty Wishlist, what's on your list?

Thursday, November 16, 2017

CPNA Find: Feather & Bone Face Gem

Press Sample

Greetings, dear readers! I'm back with another one of my beauty finds from this year's Cosmoprof North America business-to-business beauty event. Today's post features Face Gems Face Wash from Feather & Bone.

Face Gems Face Wash is a dry-pressed tablet composed of just three Ayurvedic ingredients: sandalwood, fuller's earth, and starch. Each tablet is specially formulated to be the perfect amount for one use, and they are individually packaged to retain their freshness. Due to it being one of the remarkably few ingredients, these do smell quite strongly of sandalwood. While it isn't my favorite scent, I'm not opposed to it either; I just wanted to make you aware of it should you have strong feelings about the scent of this particular tree.

These tablets are firmly pressed and can withstand abuse in luggage conducted by airlines, but they also easily work up to a paste with 10 drops of water and a little pressure. Once the tablet is fully dissolved into this paste, it can then be scooped up and massaged onto your face. You then use water to rinse it off.

In spite of using the maximum brand-suggested 10 drops to make my paste, it was far too abrasive for my skin at this consistency. In the end, I opted to dilute it substantially, as is shown in this photo. After rinsing off what remained of the paste, my skin felt smooth but parched. I followed up my Face Gems wash with my normal serum and moisturizer routine, but it was not enough to make up for the natural oils that had been stripped from my skin. The sebaceous glands in my skin went into overdrive for the rest of the day producing more sebum than usual, giving my face a constant oil layer that needed to be blotted off repeatedly. Thankfully my skin situation self-resolved within the day, although not without leaving me a few pimples to remind me of the experience.

Final Thoughts

I wanted to like these Face Gems, especially since they are so conveniently sized and easy to pack for traveling, but based on my experience from one use, I am not a fan of this product. Even with diluting it substantially more than was directed, its exfoliating nature was too harsh for my sensitive skin. Not only did it physically feel uncomfortably rough on my face, it worked a little too well to remove the sebum from my skin. Obviously results may vary and depend on your own person body chemistry, but I can say with certainty that these are not for me.

Should you be interested in trying out these Face Gems Face Wash tablets for yourself, they can be purchased at the Feather & Bone website located here. They can be purchased in a smaller 10-piece Jet-Setter pack for $7.99 or in an individual Monthly Pack (60 tablets) for $30. They also have a Monthly Subscription plan for up to 6 months for only $19.97 per month.

Have you tried the Face Gems before? I'd love to hear about your experience with these!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful night!

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Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Zoya Fall 2017 Lipsticks

Press Sample

There are few things better than a brand new lipstick to make my day, and Zoya is back at it again with seven new shades released this season! As a whole, the shade variety of the full Zoya lipstick lineup is limited, but you are like me and need a slight change in undertones or colour depth to find your perfect red or wine shade, Zoya is certainly a brand worth checking out. Since I was first introduced to the brand six years ago, I have seen a substantial increase in their lipstick offerings as they have been launching a few new shades alongside many of their collections over the year. If you'd like to hear more about the new shades in this ultra-creamy product line, follow along with me in the post!

Bristol - Addie - Lucky - Layne - Tommy - Izzy - Maggie

I decided at the last possible moment to include a set of arm swatches in this post. While swatching on the arm gives a general idea of colour, it isn't the most accurate in determining how a lipstick, or any other beauty product for that matter, it truly going to perform when on the lips or designated location. I found this to be particularly true when arm swatching several of the shades in this collection. On these are swatches, Bristol, Addie, and Maggie were run over my arm several times in order to build up good colour while Tommy, a shade you'll have more details on soon, only took one swipe for this depth of colour. I have swatched all these lipsticks on my lips, and I'll include the details about each shade as I get to them. Ready? Let's do this!

 A medium wine tone in a hydrating cream formula.

Bristol might have been sheer on my arm and had to be built up for colour, but on the lips, the colour payout is gorgeous! I have to admit I was a little afraid this would be a disappointment with my initial swatch, and I am so happy to report I was wrong! The formula is so smooth and creamy, and I had about five hours of wear before needing to touch it up.

A pinky nude apricot in a hydrating cream formula.

Addie may have taken several strokes when swatched on my arm, but it was nicely pigmented with about two coats in these photos. Addie is one of those shades for when you want a "you, but better" look although I don't find it the most flattering on my skintone. That said, if you can rock this type of colour, you will love the smooth formula! I had to touch this up after about four hours of wear, but I love just how comfortable this shade is!

A vibrant cool toned pink in a hydrating cream formula.

Hello, beautiful! My first thought when I saw Lucky was that Zoya picked the wrong season to release this beauty. This jaw-dropping shade is bright and more akin to what I expect for spring and summer. That being said, if I spot someone wearing it next week, I'd be the first to call out "HOT HOT HOT" and ignore the season! This is actually the colour I was on the hunt for last summer but couldn't quite find what I wanted to I'm happy to see it join the Zoya lineup. I wore it for about six hours before needing touchups.

A medium dusty rose in a hydrating cream formula.

Layne was another shade in this collection I was unsure of with first glance, and I was surprised that it turned out to be a favorite for me. I generally can't pull off most light pink hues, but this one has just enough dustiness, and on me, the slightest hint of purple that I was swooning. Like the rest of the collection, it is so smooth and creamy on the lips, but it will have to be applied after about four hours of wear.

A saturated blurple in a hydrating cream formula.

While Tommy isn't a particularly crazy colour, it is a little more unusual from the Zoya brand for a lipstick. I don't wear non-traditional colours often, especially outside the month of October, but I really wanted to like this lipstick. Unfortunately, Tommy didn't win me over as much as I had hoped it would. While the swatch on my arm was pigmented and even, you can really tell that is not the case on the lips. I have one two coats here to try and build up the colour, but rather than actually build up, the second coat did little more than shift the lipstick around to other parts of my lips, leaving behind new thin spots. While I suspect this can be remedied with setting with powder between coats, as I did not do that for any of these photos, I really would prefer to not have to take that step. Also, I had maybe an hour of wear before my already thin spots were more obvious; I admit I just gave up at that point and removed this lipstick rather than reapply.

A deep fuchsia in a hydrating cream formula.

You know how I started this post by saying Zoya is great if you're trying to get the perfect hue since some colours are relatively similar? Izzy is the perfect deep rose shade I've been wanting in my life! Out of the rest of the new shades, this is the one I keep grabbing for again and again and is working on becoming my signature shade. I love that is has the perfect amount of depth so it is wearable from day into night. I get about five hours of wear out of this beauty until I'm ready for a touchup.

A deep berry in a hydrating cream formula.

Let me be blunt with you here: I REALLY wanted to hate Maggie. The specifics as to why are irrelevant for this blog post but I felt the need to share that detail before saying I freaking love this lipstick! While the colour isn't even close to the richness I would expect from a product described as a "rich berry", your lips so end up looking berry-kissed. The best part is it didn't take the amount of buildup on my lips for colour payout as it did in my original arm swatch. I have had to change my view on the name and think of a fellow blogger's precocious little girl to give it the positive spin I need to continue to wear it. I've been getting roughly four hours of wear time before needing to touch up my lips.

Each of these lipsticks retail on the website for $12.

This concludes today's post on the new Zoya lipsticks! I also have a set to give away to a lucky follower, so feel free to chime in if you would before I give it away on my blog or social media accounts! I really haven't decided yet and your thoughts just might sway me! Also, tell me what your favorite shade is!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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