Mascara Monday: LORAC Special Effects mascara

Dang. It’s been forever since I’ve reviewed a mascara. Probably a good 3 weeks. And to be honest,  me and my lashes needed the break. My lashes are stronger and a bit longer and I’m glad to break my hiatus with a mascara like this. Because, let’s face it – when it comes to mascaras, LORAC can’t do any wrong in my book. And here’s why…

Price: $23 at Sephora and Sephora.com
Packaging (brush wand): 5 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “LORAC Special Effects Mascara delivers a double dose of lash beauty. One side is a primer containing natural oils, DL-Panthenol, and plant extracts to revitalize your lashes, making them stronger and softer. The other side features a carbon black Defining and Lengthening Mascara that is formulated with unique polymers to stretch and hold lash shape for clump and flake-free lashes. Both formulas are infused with mother-of-pearl to keep lashes supple, healthy, and shiny.” (source)

The Truth: These wands are epically amazing. Wait. Is epically a word?

What I Loved About It: I’m in love with the wands. They are great for separation and really help elongate the lashes.

What I Didn’t Like: I think the primer has too much of a gel consistency and so it makes the mascara not as long-lasting as I’d like it to be.

Overall: I love everything about the brand LORAC. If you haven’t heard about this brand and you’re in the mood to try somethin’ new, hop to it, girlfriend. I’ve tried everything from their eyeshadow palettes to their Multiplex 3D Lashes mascara. That mascara is effing awesome and so I was wishing on a star that Special Effects would woo me too. And it did! Here’s the thing – it’s one of those dual wands-type mascaras. I ain’t gonna lie….these kind of mascaras are a bit annoying. I’m not always in the mood to apply a mascara primer AND then mascara. I know…it’s not like this insanely laborious task so I really should even complain about it.

Luckily, these beautiful wands make it easier….


 

Gorgeous right? Both wands are exactly the same and they are quite exceptional. Ideal for those with short and sparse lashes, these wands were easy to wiggle right through my lashes while coating each lash with mascara. However, because the bristles are plastic and not like “brushes”, you won’t get much volume. Which is okay. Sometimes a darn good lengthening mascara can make me forget about the desire for volume.

The primer: Like most primers, this one is white and the gel-y consistency mimics most primers. It’s okay. Not spectacular. In fact, I actually prefer using this mascara WITHOUT the primer. The primer tends to make my lashes soft thus resulting in limited wear time.

When I don’t wear the primer, I find that the mascara lasts a lot longer and my lashes are a lot sturdier and harder. I suppose it’s a preference thing. I’m a gal that prefers lashes on the harder side. Granted, I don’t want them like bricks but if they’re semi-stiff without being damaging, I don’t mind it.

So yeah – this mascara sans the primer gives darn good length and separation with longevity. Score! Gotta love a mascara whose results actually live up to their claims. I can’t tell you how many times this DOESN’T happen. Oh! And this mascara is free from synthetic fragrances, dyes, petrochemicals and phthalates. But it’s not free from parabens. Which is…kinda weird.

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 1 coat of primer

Lashes after 2 coats of mascara

 

Do I recommend it?: Absolutely! Especially if you’ve got the pennies to spend on something fancy. Just know that you may like the mascara better without the primer.

Any LORAC fans in the house? What do you think about mascaras that come with primers attached? Do you ever use ‘em?


New hot ‘n cool lippies from Manic Panic

Remember that time – that loooooong time ago when I did a post on the awesomeness that was a Manic Panic lipstick? Welp. I’m back with more awesome Manic Panic lipsticks. I know. You’re excited. I can feel the excitement through the interwebs. How weird would that be? You know…to be able to feel emotions through the internet….

I know, I’m so weird. I am forever thinking about the strangest stuff.

Anywhoovers, even though I’m all moved in the new joint, I am still trying to find the best places to take pictures. Our new place is a condo and I don’t have a backyard, porch, patio or anything. So hang in there with me while I found ideal spots to take pretty pics.

Because let’s face it – cosmetics intertwined with nature is much more interesting than white backgrounds. I’m just sayin’…

Much like Physicians Formula’s light up lipglosses, Manic Panic’s High Voltage Lip Glosses have a built-in light. Yes, I know these are gimmicky but they are so fun. I managed to get my hands on 2 of those glosses.

There’s Naked, the soft pink frost…

Oh, and please excuse my chipped nail polish. Would you believe I haven’t polished them in over a WEEK. *gasp* Let’s move on before I start shivering again. Like most of these light up lipglosses, these come with groovy mirrors on the back. I find them to be perfect for touching up on the go. Oh but wait, I also snagged Radioactive….

Somehow Radioactive looked better swatched on my arm than on my lips. While it is indeed a red, it certainly looks more vibrant in the tube than in person. But still – it’s a nice deep red with enough blue undertones to make me happy.

What I love about these lippies:
-They’re vegan!
-They’re scented but they aren’t heavily scented.
-They are super glossy and provide a ton of shine to the lips.
-There are only 4 shades but there is a nice selection of shades.
-While not long-lasting, they are moisturizing with a non-tacky formula.

What is just so so about these lippies:
-I believe that you can only get them online. Womp.
-I’m not a fan of how the light comes on the minute you unscrew the top. It’s a battery waster and makes it difficult to apply lip color when you’re already surrounded by a bunch of light. I would much prefer a dedicated button for the light.
-They’re $12.99 which my be considered steep for some.

 

Stepping away from lip glosses for a quick sec, I took a stroll with the lovely Hot Hot Pink lipstick.

I never owned MAC’s Candy Yum Yum but I reckon this baby is close in shade to that insanely popular lip color. This lipstick is BRIGHT.

It’s a stunning neon pink that I WISH I could wear solo. But my warm tones won’t be complimented with a pink this bright. My best bet is to use it in conjunction with a nice berry lipliner. And I’m okay with that.

Manic Panic’s lipsticks are reasonably priced at $8. Which is about right for a brand that sits comfortably between drugstore and higher-end.

Off I go to figure out how to get more use out of that Hot Hot Pink. Or pank as some of us would call it. :D

Get your Manic Panic fix from zee website.

Pretty Polishes: butter LONDON’s Blues and a Green

The beauty room is slowly but surely coming around and I came up with the awesome idea of putting my favorite polishes in racks on the wall in some kind of pretty decorative fashion. Only a few brands will make the cut and of course, butter LONDON will be one of the brands that get on display in the Beauty Café (as will Cult Nails and A.England). The rest of the brands will be housed neatly in crates.

A few weeks before I moved, I got to snappin’ random shots of the butter babies…

Big Smoke is a dusty pseudo-metallic blue that doesn’t look like any blue polish that I own.

And check it – it’s a dark blue that LOOKS blue. Which hardly ever happens. That reason alone is why Big Smoke will always have my heart. And it’s super shiny with no top coat. WIN!

Say ‘ello to British Racing Green!

Ohmigoodness, this green is wonderful. Not a fan of greens but want to dabble around with them a bit? This is the one to go for. It’s a subtle green but still has a ton of personality.

As does Dosh.

butter LONDON describes Dosh as a molten apple-green with pretty shimmer. It isn’t as bright as chartreuse and looks like every bit of a Granny Smith apple.

As soon as I get to unpacking, I’ll be dabbling around with more of my butter LONDON polishes. I am well on my way to owning ALL of their polishes.

A bit much? Yeah. Kinda. But hey…some girls buy shoes… 8) You can grab butter LONDON online and at select department stores.

Any bL lovers in the house?

Dr. LeWinn by Kinerase Lip Resculpt 3D Lip Balm. Yay or nay to lip lip plumpers??

 

I’m all about reviewing products of brands that a lot of us have may never heard of. That’s where this lippy comes in. While I’ve heard of Kinerase, I have never seen any of their balms and skincare products in drugstores. But, they’re there! Yep, this lippy and other Dr. LewWinn by Kinerase products are sold in Walgreens, Walmart and other drugstores. Pretty groovy, uh?

Let’s rap about this balm.

Aside from promising to plump lips in 5 minutes, this paraben-free balm also increases moisture in lips in just 20 hours, has SPF 20 as well as leaves lips with a nice shine.


In terms of packaging, it isn’t the prettiest lip gloss in the world.

If you’re a guy or gal that could care less about packaging, then this shouldn’t be a deal breaker. I’m always weary of products that claim to plump lips. And for several reasons:

1. I obviously don’t need any plumpin’ in my lips.
2. Just what is it that makes my lips plump?
3. …..and will it wear off?

I question these things. While most gloses that promise “plumping” use peppermint oil to swell the lips up a bit, I can’t quite put my fingers on what gives this product the plumping action. That is…IF the plumping action exists. I didn’t notice any difference in my lips, but then again, I’m gal who has large lips. And has no problems with them either. 8)

Aside from not noticing any plumping, the gloss was a little too watery for my taste. It kept seeping in my mouth. The taste and smell are a bit too medicinal for my liking. It’s not the best lip balm I’ve ever tried. But I’ve certainly tried worse. I’ve spotted this kid at Walgreens and you can also get it from Walgreens.com for less than $10.

What do you think? Do you believe products when they say they’ll plump your lips?

Cos Bar now at Target!

Yo yo yo! Where my Target beauty lovers at? I have this ritual. Every Saturday morning after I leave the gym. I go to Target. For no real reason either. It’s own my way home. That’s reason enough, right? I also like to take some peeps at the new additions down the beauty lanes.

If you’re a regular Target beauty shopper, you see some awesome new finds from The Shops of Target. Target has partnered with several business owners of speciality stores to give customers the opportunity to purchase some really cool products. One of those businesses is Cos Bar.

Native to NYC, owner Lily Garfield moved to Aspen and launched Cos Bar. It’s a groovy brand and I’d love to see a boutique with products like these in my streets. The collection includes a ton of beauty baubles including body care products, bath accessories, beauty tools, manicure essentials and cosmetic bags. I’m featuring a few of the goodies from the line.

Oh! And if you’re a budget-conscious gal like moi, each product is under $20. Hollaaaaa!

Skincare wise, Cos Bar has everything from body washes to body butters. This Orange Citrus Body Butter ($6) smells divine…

….a little bit of Cos Bar history.

And ingredient-wise…

I thought this brand would be a little more on the preservative-free side but alas it’s not. :(

But still, it’s a fragrant body butter (and not overly fragrant either) that does a great job at bustin’ ash without the greasy feeling. So that’s good. For zee eyebrows, Cos Bar has these adorable tweezers…

For $4, they do a darn good job at a pluckin’! Careful though…after a few uses, the print started to rub off a bit.

Which made me drop a tear. I get emotional over things like that. Cos Bar also has falsies!

*gulp* I have yet to master the art of applyin’ and rockin’ lashes but I have declared 2012 as the year for when I start rockin’ the falsies. That said, stay tuned for a review of these. A pair of 3 falsies ain’t bad for $9. Am I right?

Cos Bar also has some nail polishes and y’all KNOW I’ve got to check those out. I’m anxious to do some more peering at peering at Cos Bar and since I’m at my neighborhood Target at least twice a week, that’ll be easy. I am so impressed with Target’s ability to show entrepreneurs some love by bringing their products in stores nationwide. As if I needed another reason to love big red. 8)

Amor de Lacquer: OPI Minnie Mouse collection

This collection excited me to no end. I am an ENORMOUS Disney fan. Not so much of the color pink but the fact that my girl Minnie has her own collection speaks highly for me. The Mouse and I go way back.

Yeah, literally. I was 3 or 4 years old in that picture and I am still fanatic about Disney. I actually saw Minnie Mouse a few weekends ago.

Cute, ain’t she? I forgot to congratulate her on her new line. In fact, they wouldn’t even let me get in the streets and dance around with her. Something about that only being allowed for kids. Pfft. I AM a kid, thank you very much.

If You Moust You Moust is a soft pink cream. It’s nothing terribly unique about it. And the name is kinda weird to me. I see where they’re going with the whole “Moust” thing but still…it’s weird. Ha!


Nothin’ Mousie ‘Bout It is a confetti light pink that is complete with teeny tiny hearts. It’s absolutely adorabo. Layering those hearts can be quite the feat but once you’ve mastered it, you’ve got a cutesy manicure. The added hot pink shimmer adds some nice sparkle to the mix too. I’ll definitely be pulling this out around Valentine’s Day.

 

I’m All Ears is a pretty magenta shimmer.


The Color of Minnie is an interesting shade of red. One that I can actually appreciate it. It’s a micro shimmer that applies beautifully and has a heavy dose of pink in it.

Must Haves
-Nothin’ Mousie ‘Bout It. If you don’t have any heart-sy polishes, this one is just so cute.

Formula-wise these polishes were great. I applied 2 coats for each polish. Nothin’ Mousie ‘Bout It can be a bit on the thick side. The hearts also tend to sink to the bottom of the bottle. Turning it upside down before use should help the hearts spread evenly. I would have loved to see MORE polishes in this collection. Minnie deserves it, don’t you think?

How are you feelin’ about this collection?

 

 

Amor de Lacquer….the series all about nail polish and nail care! Send your requests,
suggestions and ideas to Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

A Rose Is Still A Rose. And I smell like one!

Remember that song “Roses” the rap group Outkast had back in the day? I used to looooove that song. That whole Speakboxx/The Love Below album was jammin’ in my car the entire year I was in 11th grade. Oh. Don’t even ask me what the Outkast reference has to do with JASON Pure Natural Rosewater Body Wash. I’m random like that.

You’ve heard of the brand JASON, haven’t you? I spot this brand alllll the time at Whole Foods and other natural food stores and shops. This is my first time playing around with one of their body washes.

I’ve never been a gal who likes floral fragrances. I’m more of a woody blend mixed with citrus notes kind of woman. But this wash, dare I say it, ain’t too bad. This ginormous 30 oz bottle retails for $13.99 which means the entire family can use it daily and it will STILL last for a few weeks. Well, months for Esposo and I since we are the only ones who use our bathroom.

And that’s another thing – as nice as this body wash smells, it’s so floral that the same men who don’t mind a little dirt under their fingernails, proooobably won’t like how “girly” it smells. And it definitely smells girly.

Pro’s
-It’s got a pump! Makes for super easy dispensing.
-It has a nice and gentle formula.
-Lathered up nice and foam-y.
-Rinsed with ease and didn’t leave the skin insanely dry. Thanks to the Vitamin E!
-Free from parabens
-Fragrance isn’t too strong after rinsing off. Which I appreciate.

Con’s
-The fragrance is a bit too strong for me. Then again, most fragrances are. I see “Fragrance” on the Ingredients list and I wish the only “fragrance” that was included only came from real roses.
-It definitely isn’t portable. But that may be a good thing.
-The price point may be too much for some.

There’s a first time for everything and while I’ve spritzed rose water in my hair and have used rose water as a toner, I’ve never used an actual rose body wash. The fragrance took a bit to grow on me but now I’ve been using it daily.

Whatcha think? Would you bust suds with rose body wash?

You can get this one from natural retailers and online at JASON-Natural.com.

7 Skincare Products You Maaaay Want to Check Out

Yep, I’m still on the #-thing. What can I say? Moving has fried my brain and creatively I’ve just been reached an insane amount of Writer’s Block. But at least I’m cranking out somethin’, uh? Give a sista some props!

So we all know how much I love me some skincare. It comes before makeup and always will.Life is better when my skin is clearer and I’ve always felt more confident when I know my skin is acting halfway decent. Which, of course, is a rarity. Check out some of the past few skincare products that I’ve reviewed. Some I loved and others kinda sucked. Either way, you know I’m keepin’ it real.

 

Chocolate & Stawberry Facial Mask 

It’s not every day that you see masks that contain the same ingredients as products you may find in your kitchen. The color of this mask is less to be desired but if you don’t have super dry skin, it may be something you’ll want to try.

NARS Makeup Removing Water

Is it a toner? Is it a cleanser? Does it really remove makeup thoroughly? Can you use it instead of washing your face at night? So many questions come attached with this bottle of wah-tuh.

Neutrogena Naturals

A drugstore skincare line that omits the yucky ingredients? Yes girl. Rarely do we see this from a major skincare line. And while it has its flaws, for the most part, Neutrogena Naturals products are wonderful. Especially for those with sensitive skin.

LUSH Dark Angels Facial Charcoal Cleanser

Because yes..you CAN use a product that will make your skin look dirty but it will actually cleanse it. This is one interesting product. I’ll tell you one thing – it works beautifully but honey, you better hold your breath while using it. It’s a funky chunk of somethin’.

Burt’s Bees gud

Is gud good? I had a lot of good things to say about this brand but there were some downfalls too. Ah yes. Such is life.

Bliss Rubberizing Mask

I’ve seen them all. Clay masks, seaweed masks, honey masks but a rubberizing mask? Girl, I couldn’t make this up if I tried…

Nuance Salma Hayek’s Facial Cleansing Towelettes

Too lazy to actually wash your face? It happens. Thank goodness for these towelettes! Because you do know NOT washing your face shouldn’t be an option, right?