Sunday, July 16, 2017

This Week's Looks: Recent Purchases, Sephora Pro Editorial and Colourpop Yes, Please!

I've recently made some purchases. In a rare move for me, I purchased two palettes within a week. I thought about these purchases for a while before deciding to go through with them and really evaluated what I owned in my collection and how additive they would be. The thing I did not anticipate, however, was that I would be buying them so close together. I bought the Sephora Pro Editorial palette first, and then learned that Coloupop's Yes, Please! was going to be restocked. I purposefully stayed away from Yes, Please! when it originally launched because I wasn't sure if I really wanted it. I think a lot of companies (like Colourpop) have intentionally low stock because they want people like me who are unsure if they want something to go ahead and buy it because they have the fear of missing out. That didn't work for me. I figured that if I really wanted it, I would still want it by the time it came back in stock and I could take that time to evaluate. There were several factors that I weighed in deciding to buy this palette, and since the restock happened so soon after I bought the Editorial palette, I ended up with two palettes within a week. 

And, to be completely honest, that makes me very uncomfortable. It reminds me of the days when I was buying makeup all the time just to get through the day or week. Intellectually, I recognize that the situation is not the same, but getting multiple new makeup items felt very similar. But, these were thoughtful purchases on my part, and I am happy with them. 

Here are six looks I did this week. 

Look 1: Sephora Pro Editorial

Rose Quartz on the lid, Myiesha blended into the crease, Electric Violet padded onto the outer corner, and Porcelain on the brow bone. 

Look 2: Sephora Pro Editorial

Lou on the lid, Tangerine blended into the crease, and Porcelain on the brow bone. 

Look 3: Sephora Pro Editorial

Hector E on the lid, Tangerine blended into the crease, Eliza D blended on top of Tangerine, and Porcelain on the brow bone. 

Look 4: Colourpop Yes, Please!

Chauffeur on the lid, Big Cocktails blended into the crease, Mischief blended above Big Cocktails, and Full Zip on the brow bone. 

Look 5: Yes, Please! and Sephora Pro Editorial 

Colourpop Mischief on first half of lid, Coloupop Big Cocktails beside it, and Sephora Pro Tila on second half of lid. Zoeva Substitute for Love and Colourpop Big Cocktails blended lightly in the crease. 

Look 6: Colourpop Yes, Please!

Louie on the lid, Butter Cake padded on top of Louie in the center of the lid, Big Cocktails and Spoiled blended into the crease, Mischief blended above Big Cocktails and Spoiled, and Full Zip on the brow bone. 

So, this is an odd post for me because it is not quite a one week, one palette post, but it is also not a traditional "this week's looks" post either since I only used two palettes the entire week. So, I thought instead I would offer thoughts on each palette. 

Sephora Pro Editorial 

This palette is so large that it will probably take me a few weeks just to try all the colors. I was limited this week to what would be appropriate (enough) to wear to work, so that meant the blues and greens were a bit of a no-go. Ironically, I bought this palette for the more colorful shadows, and I ended up doing neutral(ish) looks that I can do with a lot of shadows in my collection. I know it's not noticeable, but the shadow I used all over my lid in look 1 is a really pretty pink duochrome (which are always challenging for me to capture in a picture), and I love how it looked paired with the purple shadows. 

The rest of the looks unintentionally followed a sunset theme, which is interesting to me. I may not be all that creative with my makeup looks, but I actually found the palette to be a little difficult to work with in terms of sticking just this to palette. The shimmers, for example, were either light and duochrome or pretty warm-toned. I found it challenging to use a lot of the gorgeous matte shades because I simply could not think of a shimmer that would look good with it. As a result, I ended up with some pretty standard (boring) color schemes. I would have pulled other shimmers from my collection to use with the colorful mattes, but I wanted to see how the palette would work on its own. I'll definitely need to play with this palette more, and in terms of using it as a companion palette, I think it will be great. But in terms of a standalone palette, I don't really know if I think it's all that comprehensive. 

In terms of quality, I was pleased. The shadows do kick up some dust, but nothing more than my shadows from Makeup Geek or Anastasia Beverly Hills. I have a feeling that the pigment may be a miss on some of the shadows, but it was great on all shadows I've used so far. The colors also blended really well, but I have shadows that feel a bit more luxurious to work with. 

Colourpop Yes, Please!

I have to say, I absolutely love this palette. I love everything about it. I love the colors, the color scheme, the quality, and the size. And I find the palette to be very inspiring, which is quite rare for me. I thought these shadows were going to be the same size as a full-sized Colourpop pressed shadow, but they are not. They are a bit smaller. And I actually really like that. It's slim and fits nicely in my storage, and I'm sure it will be really great for travel. I also appreciate the smaller pans because I'm sure that's what helped keep the cost low ($16). 

The one gripe I have about this palette (and it's a major one) is how difficult it is for people to buy it. I had a feeling that the recent restock was going to go exactly as it did (selling out in a matter of minutes), but, I don't know, I hoped it would have gone differently. It's always really disappointing to me when I see so many people wanting to buy something and brands just don't have the stock (intentionally or not) to meet that demand. 

Saturday, July 15, 2017

What I'm Not Buying: Colourpop X Karrueche She Palette

Colourpop is having a palette moment, and their latest release is a collaboration with Karrueche Tran.

And I won't be buying. 

As I've said, Colourpop is having a palette moment, and I have to say that I find it a little exciting. Several months ago, I wrote a post on why I no longer purchased from Colourpop. But that was before the launch of their pressed shadows. And I have to say, I have been pretty happy with all of the pressed shadows I've purchased from Colourpop, including their recent and very popular Yes, Please! palette. 

So when I heard they were releasing another palette, I admit that I was interested to see what it would look like. And I have to say, I'm just not all that inspired. This looks like a pink-toned palette with champagne, taupe, and berry shades. And yet, this palette is already sold out. 

Let's talk about that for a second. I recently purchased the Yes, Please! palette. I knew when it was going to be restocked, that time happened to work with my schedule that day, I got on the website when it became available, and purchased it. It was no biggie for me. But then I saw that the palette sold out in less than fifteen minutes. That's bonkers to me. And it feels very, very intentional on Colourpop's part. I went onto the Colourpop Instagram later that day and saw literally thousands of comments of people pleading with Colourpop to make the palette permanent, to restock again, or to have enough stock so that people didn't have to buy it within seconds of its release and plan their entire day (including their work schedule) around buying makeup. 

I absolutely believe that Colourpop, like so many other brands, orchestrated the hype around the release of the Yes, Please! palette. I believe they launched with intentionally low stock and then restocked with intentionally low stock. When something sells out in minutes, it gets people's attention. Even people who didn't have this palette on their radar will all of a sudden become interested when they know that the palette is so popular that it sold out that quickly. And then people who didn't even want the palette will not only want it, but they will have to have it. They will obsess over it and try to track it down until they have it. And that is exactly what Colourpop wants. 

Before going in to buying that palette, I told myself that if the site crashed, I was out. It's simply not worth it for me to put up with that kind of mania for a makeup item. I also told myself that if I was unable to get the palette, that it would be totally okay. But, as I said, it was a relatively breezy experience for me, so I was pretty disappointed to see that the experience was not the same for so many people. 

And I think the mania surrounding Yes, Please! also helped Colourpop in the launch of the She palette. What's so funny to me about this is that so many people stalked the website for this launch and pounced on the release, and I don't think the colors are all that special. Additionally, apparently Colourpop released the palette an hour or more before other items in the collection were made available, so many people ended up placing multiple orders because they were afraid that if they didn't jump on the palette within seconds of it being released, they would miss out on it entirely. Shipping is free on orders over $30, but since the palette is $16, many people ended up paying the shipping fee on their multiple orders. Again, I don't think any of this is coincidental. 

And, look. I get it. I love that Coloupop offers good quality pressed shadows that are on trend for affordable prices. I think every other makeup brand should follow their lead. However, manufacturing hype to get more money out of people just feels so gross to me. And especially for the colors in this palette, I don't think it's worth it. 

Let's look at the palette again:

And swatches:

I admit that this color scheme is very pretty, and I am drawn to it. But it is absolutely nothing new. It has been around since the Naked 3:

And Lorac Unzipped:

In recent years, it looks like several palettes from Tarte, including Make Magic Happen:

Tartelette Tease Clay:

Dream Big:

Don't Quit Your Day Dream:

Tartelette in Bloom:

And Tarteist Pro:

It also looks a bit like Zoeva En Taupe:

There are many more palettes that have the same colors as in the She palette (like the new Sephora Pro Cool palette), but these were the ones I could think of that had the most similar color schemes. 

I mention my custom palettes a lot in these posts, but that's important because it's a good reminder for me to really look at how many similar colors I have in my collection. And in this palette:

I have all of the colors in the She palette and then some. 

Something I would like to point out as I wrap up this post is that the She palette costs $16, and I have been really happy with all of the Colourpop pressed shadows that I have purchased. So, if you are someone who does not have many eyeshadows and are really excited about the color scheme of the She palette, it is certainly the least expensive of any of the palettes I've mentioned above. And for good quality, I don't think you can really beat that price. But this anti-haul is for all those other makeup lovers who have all of these colors already in their collection, or who maybe even have one or more of the above palettes, who are being lured in by the hype and marketing tactics. If you already have all these colors, you don't need to add another palette, no matter how cheap it is. And if you are trying to justify buying this palette when you know you already have all the colors by saying you want to just try the Colourpop pressed shadows, why don't you pick out a few singles instead? They already have a ton of colors, so why don't you pick out a few that look gorgeous to you that you don't already have and then try out the formula? You don't need to add an entire palette to your collection with shades you already own because you are curious about a formula and are looking to justify the purchase and buying into the hype. 

Just let the hype pass. Soon Coloupop will come out with another palette that people will be going crazy for, and the hype around this one will be gone. And there are so many brands coming out with new palettes all the time that the intense hype seems to only last a few weeks before it passes. 

For me, I know I already have all these colors, so this palette is an easy pass for me. I wish that Colourpop would really calm down on the hype and hysteria tactics and just let their products speak for themselves. With that, they should significantly up their stock so that customers can have an enjoyable purchasing experience instead of a stressful one where if you don't hit the site within five minutes you won't get an item you want to buy. It shouldn't be so hard for a company to take your money. Just remember that. 

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Recent Looks: Urban Decay, Femme Fatale, Ardency Inn, Stila, and Colourpop

Hi all. I haven't made one of these posts in a very long time, and that's because, as I've mentioned, I've been recovering from major surgery. It has almost been six weeks since my surgery, and I am just now finally getting back into the swing of things in my life, including putting on makeup and writing these posts. In a few weeks I will have another surgery, so these posts will be on hiatus again. 

What's included here is a mishmash of things I've worn in the last few weeks. To be completely honest, I don't remember exactly when I wore all of these looks, but here they are, all the same. 

Look 1: Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Palette*

Boom on the lid, Bobbi Brown Camel blended into the crease, and Untitled padded onto the outer corner. Exu, Boom, and Untilted on the lower lash line. 

Look 2: Femme Fatale Watery Grave

Watery Grave (over Pixie Epoxy) on the lid and Costal Scents Fine Wine blended into the crease. 

Look 3: Urban Decay Electric Palette, Colourpop Cannonball, and Kat Von D Pastel Goth

UD Savage on the lid, Colourpop Cannonball blended into the crease, and Kat Von D Star blended over Cannonball. Star, Cannonball, and Savage on the lower lash line. 

Look 4: Colourpop High Strung and The News

(High Strung: Row 3, Column 2; The News: Row 1, Column 4) 

High Strung on the lid and The News blended into the crease. 

Look 5: Ardency Inn Royal and Melt Love Sick

Royal on the lid and Love Sick blended into the crease. 

Look 6: Stila Magnificent Metals Glitter and Glow: Next to Notte

Next to Notte on the lid and Zoeva Substitute for Love, Costal Scents Oktoberfest, and Lime Cime Muse blended into the crease. 

Look 1: Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Palette

*Upfront, I want to address that there is controversy surrounding this palette and collection from Urban Decay. One controversy is the question of if Basquiat would have been supportive of this kind of a collection. I don't really like it when people speak for someone else, so I am choosing to not offer an opinion of if Basquiat would have approved. I will say, however, as someone who worked in fine art at a major museum, that using artwork for profit feels in line with what a lot of art is. The second controversy, in my opinion, is quite significant. And that is that Urban Decay chose to have Ruby Rose model for the collection instead of a black model. This, I feel, was incredibly tone-deaf on Urban Decay's part. I know this decision disappointed a lot of people, myself included. Separately, I want to add that this palette was given to me as a gift. 

Status: Keep

With all of that said, I did enjoy using this palette, but I have not used it outside of this look. The teal color, Boom, is absolutely gorgeous, and I loved it paired with the navy and lime green. I am not the biggest fan of the quality of Urban Decay palettes, but find I do really enjoy their colorful shadows. I'm interested to see how the rest of the palette performs.

Look 2: Femme Fatale Watery Grave
Status: Keep 

I really enjoyed this shadow, and it reminds me a lot of Fyrinnae Illusionary, but a touch darker. I paired this with Fine Wine from Costal Scents and really enjoyed how it looked. I feel like cooler tones (maybe?) might be the next trend with everyone a little burnt out on all the warm-toned palette releases, and I think purples like this with depth are unique cool tones.

Look 3: Urban Decay Electric Palette, Colourpop Cannonball, and Kat Von D Pastel Goth
Status: Love

This look was entirely inspired by this look from KathleenLights. I'm not a person who watches many tutorials, but I thought this look was just so gorgeous. I wore it on the Fourth of July and I loved it. This was also the first time that I've used Star from the Pastel Goth palette, and I was really pleased with how bright and pigmented it is. (One of my major complains about that palette is that the shadows can be very pale.) Wearing this look reminded me of how much I love color and how much I wish it could be considered work-appropriate. (On a separate note, why the hell is makeup work-approbate or not? I can understand wearing clothing that is not revealing and having some level of decorum, but if I want to wear hot pink eyeshadow, I feel like I should be able to.)

Look 4: Colourpop High Strung and The News
Status: Keep

I really enjoyed this look as a normal, "work-appropriate" look. It's funny. Last year, this would have been a more "out there" look for me, but ever since I discovered color (thanks to my one week, one palette project), these looks are pretty tame for me. Nonetheless, both of these Colourpop shadows were really pretty, blended well, and I enjoyed using them.

Look 5: Ardency Inn Royal and Melt Love Sick
Status: Favorite

Oh, man. I loved this look. Maybe it's obvious to other people, but purple and red is not a color combination that immediately comes to mind for me. The only reason I discovered it in the first place is because of the Melt Love Sick Stack, and during my one week, one palette project, I paired the purple shade from that stack (Promiscuous) with the deep red Love Sick shade. This was my first time wearing Royal, and I have to say that I absolutely love all of my Ardency Inn shadows. I don't know why more people aren't talking about them. Love Sick blended seamlessly into Royal, and I just thought this look was so cool and pretty.

Look 6: Stila Magnificent Metals Glitter and Glow: Next to Notte
Status: Love

My love affair with the Stila Magnificent Metals continues. A glittery red shadow isn't one that I ever thought I would love, but here we are. I've read some reviews of this that say the color is actually purple, but that kind of perplexes me because mine is very red. I paired it with some of my warmer shadows and thought the look came out really pretty. I asked someone today (when I wore this look) if my makeup was "too much," and they said, "Surprisingly, no." That's something that's nice about Next to Notte. I think it packs the same amount of glitter and shine as the other Magnificent Metals, but because the color is so deep and opaque, it doesn't scream, "RED GLITTER!" in your face. Not that I would be opposed to that.