Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Kokie Professional Cosmetics | Demo,💋 Swatches, & Review

Story time!
Hello, everyone! I know I have been MIA. I apologize for my absence, but it was for genuine reasons. I appreciate that y’all have been patient with me. I was not in my element to film, but now I am back. I hope y'all connect with me on my Instagram page @strawberryheartschocolatedarts, where I post on a daily basis. Today on the Chai Time menu: Kokie Professional Cosmetics.   

I first discovered the brand Kokie Cosmetics through posts on Instagram that showcased the brand’s beautiful nail polish selection. I started following the brand on Instagram and learned that their nail polishes – a select variety - are sold in select Bed, Bad, and Beyond Harmon’s stores.  So I ventured out to my local BBB Harmon’s to check the Kokie Cosmetics nail polishes, but the colors that I was interested in were not available at the locations near me.  This took Kokie Cosmetics off my radar until this past Spring when the brand announced on Instagram that they not only have nail polishes, but makeup and brushes too, which would soon be releasing in select Walmart locations. Soon after their announcement, Kokie Cosmetics displays were spotted at Walmart stores. Hence, my hunt commenced! 

To find out if a Walmart near you carries Kokie, visit the Kokie Cosmetics website, select the Walmart tab, and enter your zip code.  This is how I searched for a display near me rather than hopping from store to store, wasting my time.  I really appreciate that Kokie Cosmetics has this locator feature on their website because unfortunately Walmart is so disorganized in my opinion.  I am a Target gal, no ifs or buts about it!

Now let us circle back to today’s video.  I was able to find a display right after it had been freshly set up.  For those of you familiar with the chaos that is Walmart –especially its makeup isles, which sometimes look like a storm has passed through – will appreciate the sanctity of a fresh untouched display.  I got to the apples first y’all, fresh and juicy for the picking.

Although I would have liked to try several products, I limited myself to just the liquid lipsticks.  I am not much of a base wearer nor do I like to switch it up much – I stick to what works.  The color products, like the eye shadows and blushes, didn’t speak to me because they appeared better suited for lighter, fairer skin-tones.  Also, I am a fledgling beauty blogger and invest my own money in purchasing products to test and review so I cannot get carried away.  Basically, I am a lipstick gal and that’s what triggered my love for makeup artistry and blogging.  So let us take a look at what I picked up, shall we?

Demo & Swatches

Kokie Cosmetics has two formulations of liquid lipsticks: the Kissable Liquid Lipstick and the Lip Poudre. 

·      Kissable Liquid Lipstick claims – “love the matte look but not desert-dry lips? Never fear, Kokie Cosmetics is here with our Kissable Matte Lip Gloss! These liquid lipsticks glide on like velvet and dry into a soft, kissable matte … Comfortable, transfer-proof… “ (Kokie Professional website)

·      Lip Poudre claims – “our formula provides water-resistant, intensely pigmented, weightless color that wont flake or dry out lips. Plus, it’s reapplication-friendly! Glides on as a cream and dries to a feather-light, velvety soft, matte lipstick.” (Kokie Professional website)

Let me give it to y’all straight, if you have dry lips, despite your efforts to keep them hydrated, and most (like 99%) matte liquid lipsticks do not suit you, then the Kissable Liquid Lipstick formula is ideal for you. The Kissable formula has a gel-cream hybrid texture.  It’s gel-like characteristic is what makes it adhere well to the lips so initially it has that slight tackiness of a gloss and you can feel it on your lips.  It takes a few minutes to set to a semi-matte finish.  Although it is very comfortable as Kokie Cosmetics claims, it is not transfer-proof.  If you don’t like your lipsticks to have sheen and prefer that they set completely matte, then you will not be a fan of the Kissable formula. 

The Lip Poudre formula is difficult to explain. In fact, it is somewhat “powdery” as its name implies.  It has a thinner, more of a liquid-cream consistency in comparison to the Kissable formula.  However, once it sets, it felt and looked gritty and enhanced every nook and cranny of my lips.  I loved the Lip Poudre color Duchess, but despite being such a pigmented mid-tone plummy mauve shade, it looked dry, but not dry in the sense that it set fully matte. It still had dimension to it, but appeared so textured.  I think the Lip Poudre might work for someone who has really hydrated and naturally plump lips, which a good half of us don’t.  I don’t have dry lips, but I do have natural lip lines, which I was just born with, and medium sized lips, so this kind of powdery formula just doesn’t fit the bill for me. 

Between the Kissable and Lip Poudre formulas, I prefer the Kissable formula even though I like my liquid lipsticks to set to a smooth, velvety matte, sheen-less finish.  There are comfortable fully matte liquid lipsticks out there in the market, especially because every beauty brand is coming out with their version of a matte liquid lipstick. 
Please like, comment, share, follow, and subscribe! 

 Yours Truly,
The Lipsticks-Ninja

Social Media 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

HASK Coconut Milk and Organic Honey Curl Care Collection Review

Affordability. Quality. Performance. Results. Natural. This is what we - the consumers - look for when investing money in beauty products. Shampoos and conditioners are staple products in our beauty regiments. Let’s be honest – they are simply not sexy like a coconut sea salt spray to get those exotic beach waves or a new shade of a hot-orange lipstick or bakery scented body butter. I mean I would rather buy a new lipstick than the basic amenities, right! However, we just cannot skip out on the shampoo and conditioner dynamic-duo because after all it is a matter of personal hygiene at the very least if not a “me-time” pampering sort of moment in the shower involving a soothing scalp massage.

What I am actually trying to say is that hair care is important. I think a good hair day plays a role in seizing the day! We feel confident and put together when our hair looks healthy and well maintained. Our hair frames our face and our face is what people look at (or should be looking at) during a conversation. It is no fun to spend $15-30 on a bottle of shampoo and/or conditioner and that too multiple times a year.

My favorite affordable drugstore hair care brand is HASK. I was introduced to HASK a little over a year ago when I was accepted to review their Bamboo line. In fact, my husband is a loyal HASK user as well! He and I have purchased and tried the Monoi Coconut Oil, Argan Oil, and Keratin Protein lines over the past year.  I have also introduced HASK to a few of my close friends when they asked me for a recommendation of a “healthy, natural, and affordable shampoo brand that actually works.” Now they are all HASK fans and have thanked me for inspiring them to wear their hair naturally (i.e., not heat-styled or loaded with styling products) and feel confident about doing so. 

Recently, I was given the opportunity to try one of the latest HASK lines – Coconut Milk & Organic Honey Curl Care.  Doesn’t that sound delicious, especially as we are amidst the summer season? It literally sounds like a summery beach-time cocktail, but for our hair.  If you are a fan of the virgin coconut oil scent, you are going to love this line.  The coconut scent of this line is even more dominantly coconut than the scent of the Monoi Coconut Oil line. 

I am glad that I was already using the HASK Coconut Monoi Oil shampoo and conditioner (purchased myself from Bed, Bath, & Beyond Harmon’s) before I was sent the HASK Coconut Milk and Organic Honey shampoo and conditioner for review purposes because I think I am able to give a more informed review to those of you contemplating which one of the two Coconut varieties to purchase. 

The consistency of the HASK Coconut Milk and Organic Honey shampoo and conditioner is thicker than the HASK Coconut Monoi Oil shampoo and conditioner.  However, once you massage the Coconut Monoi Oil shampoo into your hair, it lathers into a heavier, more emollient and creamier consistency than the Coconut Milk and Organic Honey shampoo.  I also noticed that I felt the need to use more of the Coconut Milk and Organic Honey conditioner than the Coconut Monoi Oil conditioner because the latter is more emollient and only two-quarter size squirts of it is needed for my long (below-waist length) hair. 

My hair is naturally curly, voluminous, and frizzy.  I have dealt with frizzy hair since I grew out my hair (from a no-fuss boy-cut) during my pre-teen, early adolescent years. I rarely heat-style my hair and have never used bleach or lightener on it so it is just naturally frizzy and constantly in major need of conditioning.  I love having long hair and don’t want to compromise on the length of it because of the frizz.  About five or six years ago, I started getting keratin conditioning treatments annually, which helped eliminate the unmanageable volume and frizz, and gave my hair a smoother, wavy look, and allowed me to keep my hair long.  However, keratin conditioning treatments alone are not enough and I would not recommend getting them too often… only as needed because one, you don’t want your hair to become desensitized to the treatment (as with over-doing anything) and two, it is quite an investment monetarily.  Even though my stylist recommends using the shampoo and conditioner that comes in the Keratin treatment product line, I don’t because it is very expensive for the quantity you get and I prefer my affordable, sulfate-free HASK shampoo and conditioners instead. Yes, indeed the HASK line not only helps maintain the Keratin treatment by not stripping it, but also adds to the conditioning my hair needs. 

Personally, I find that the HASK Coconut Monoi Oil shampoo and conditioner is better suited for people with long, thick, voluminous, coarse, dry, and frizzy hair, while the Coconut Milk and Organic Honey shampoo and conditioner is better suited for people with short to medium length, fine, thin, brittle, and frizzy hair.  Both lines of shampoo and conditioner provide the needed moisture and hydration to combat the frizz and get a smoother, shinier look to your hair.  For some people the effect of the Coconut Milk and Organic Honey might not be enough and for others the effect of Coconut Monoi Oil might be too much so deciding which one you think you might need, I will leave that up to you.  As for the Coconut Milk and Organic Honey line’s curl care claim, I did not observe anything noticeable when comparing it to the performance of the Coconut Monoi Oil line or any of the other HASK lines I have tried previously (Bamboo, Argan, and Keratin). 

HASK products are available at Ulta (in-store and online), Target (in-store and online), and at select Bed, Bath, & Beyond (Harmon’s) stores. 
 ♡ http://www.ulta.com/brand/hask

FTC Disclaimer: I would like to thank HASK and Brandbacker for providing press sample for this post.
Please like, comment, share, follow, and subscribe! 

 Yours Truly,
The Lipsticks-Ninja

Social Media 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Bare Minerals Gen Nude Matte Liquid Lip Colors | ChaiTimewithMeesha

If the "liquid to ultra-matte" liquid lipsticks are not for you, then you must try out the new Bare Minerals Gen Nude Liquid Lipcolors line.  Not only does this line focus on wearable neutral aka "nude" lip shades for all skin-tones, but a comfortable semi-matte liquid lipstick formula.  These lipsticks dry down to a semi-matte finish once they have been on the lips for a good few minutes and maintain a smooth and creamy feeling on the lips.  If you prefer a true matte liquid lipstick, then this is definitely not your cup of tea. 

They do transfer, very slightly, especially when freshly applied. These are easy to reapply and layer because they're indeed weightless.  These do take longer than the average matte liquid lipsticks to dry down so initially you will notice a sheen for sometime. These shades did wear off a bit after I eating. I wish there were more deeper shade options than the shade Scandal, but perhaps the brand will expand the shade range in the future. 

If y'all are looking for a comfortable liquid lipstick that is available in subtle, everyday-no-fuss kind-of-shades, then I would recommend these Gen Nude matte liquid lipcolors. One does not necessarily need all or even several of the shades because the line consists of only nudes - geared for different skin-tones/under-tones - thus far. As an added bonus, these smell delicious... like a sweet warm freshly baked dessert.  If you like your lipsticks to smell like brownies, cupcakes, cookies, or the like, then you will be sold on these at first sniff. Honestly, don't judge me, but that was a major attraction for me personally. 

Please view my video above for demo-application and lip-swatches. Thank you! 

Please like, comment, share, follow, and subscribe! 

 Yours Truly,
The Lipsticks-Ninja

Social Media 

Monday, December 12, 2016

My Beauty Essentials for Travel | Easy day to night makeup tips...

My husband and I are planning a few getaways for the upcoming Christmas and New Year holidays as well as our birthdays next month.  We recently moved to the West Coast so this year we’re exploring places around the “Wild Wild West” – starting off with Vegas Baby for tis’ the season to be jolly, then the Bay Area to ring in the New Year with friends, maybe Maui/Hawaii in the near future to have some cake and eat it too, and then off to India to visit relatives.  The Hubby has a severe case of Wanderlust at the moment!

I don’t really fuss much over what I am going to wear whilst on vacation.  My fashion sense is driven by comfort and weather rather than trends and occasions.  If it is cold, you’ll find me in a thick sweater, leggings, and boots. If it is warm, you’ll find me in a button down, leggings, and gladiator sandals. Basic. Boring. I know.  On the other hand, packing my skincare and makeup bits is what causes me the greatest deal of stress – yes more than remembering to take my phone charger.  

I recently created a checklist of my current beauty favorites that are travel–friendly and thought to share it with y’all.  I have sensitive, mildly acne-prone, combination skin and don’t like to experiment with anything new before and while traveling. 

Before I talk about the products shown in the picture below, I want to mention a couple items that are not shown in the picture below (image 1).  However, I have used these products in the second and third picture below (images 2 and 3).  First up, brows!  For brows I recommend Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade and MAC Cosmetics Brow Set.  In my experience, both of these brow products have excellent staying power.  The Dip Brow Pomade does seem like it would be a bit of a hassle to carry the brow brush as well as the little tub of the DBP, but it is worth it.  Personally, I think well-groomed brows and generous sunscreen application are the two absolutes any day. 

The other items I forgot to include in the picture below (image 1) are makeup wipes (gentle enough to use on the face, eyes, and lips) and soothing sheet masks. Makeup wipes are a quick fix product. Sheet masks help to replenish, soothe, hydrate, and calm your facial skin after it has been through extensive sun exposure, pollution, temperature change, etc. while traveling.

Travel sized or deluxe sample sized beauty products, cream-based products, palettes with multi-purpose options, multi-tasking products, and liquid lipsticks are product categories that are best for traveling.  This way you can keep your toiletries/beauty bag light and in compliance with airline baggage restrictions.  I once missed a flight because the security personnel at the airport decided that my little plastic zip-lock bag was bursting at the seams. 

Now, I want to share what I usually use during the day while on vacation.  Hubby and I plan to visit Vegas for only a couple of days. In case you're also thinking about taking a trip to Las Vegas, here is a helpful website. During the day we want to take a tour of the Grand Canyon and then at night we hope to see a show and visit Casinos (not for gambling, but mainly to see the architecture and lights). 

As you can see in the picture below, I have not used a lot of products.  My focus here are well groomed brows and pure sunscreen (preferably SPF 30 or higher).  I am not using anything heavy like foundation, concealer, etc.  I have used a bit of cream blush on the cheeks to add some color and natural flush to the face.  I recommend using the Bite Beauty Multi-stick in Brioche (pictured above in image 1) for a pop of natural color on the cheeks and even on the lips if you would like.  On the lips, I have used the Jack Black Lip Balm with SPF 25 (pictured above in image 1). 

Lastly, you want to make sure that you can quickly cleanse and refresh yourself after a full day of recreational activities and before you head out for the night.  "Double-cleansing" (i.e., makeup removal plus normal cleansing) twice a day can be too abrasive for some skin-types, leading to dehydration and acne breakouts.  

After you have cleansed your face and had a refreshing shower, you can relax and get glam for your night out.  Makeup details for the picture below (used for image 3, also pictured in image 1): Belif True Cream Moisturizing Bomb (moisturizer), Cane + Austin Mattifying Primer with SPF 50 (primer + sunscreen), Hourglass Vanish Foundation - Warm Beige (base), Nars Creamy Concealer - Ginger (base)(not pictured in image 1), Physicians Formula Bronze Booster Matte Sculpting Palette (bronzing and contour), Colour Pop Highlighter - WISP (brow bone and cheek bone), Urban Decay Eye Shadow - Riff (eye crease), Touch in SOL Metallist Liquid Foil and Glitter Shadow Duo - Eldora (eye-lid), It Cosmetics Super Hero (mascara), MAC Cosmetics Nutcracker Sweet Copper Face Compact (highlighter and blush), Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade - Chocolate, MAC Cosmetics Brow Set - Quite Brunette, Pixi Beauty Makeup Setting Spray, and Dose of Colors Liquid Lipstick in Black Rose (would not recommend this particular shade as it is messy and high-maintenance, instead see options in image 1 above).

Liquid lipsticks options (pictured in image 1): Give Me Glow Cosmetics - Glampire for vampy lips, Cryptic Cosmetics - Rose Burial for a unique rosy red for the Holidays, or Lorac Pro - Sienna for a trendy 90s cinnamon brown lip.

Other than my fingers, which I used for moisturizer and highlighter, I only needed four applicators to complete this glam makeup look: beauty blender, a fluffy crease brush, and two angled blush brushes (unless you are savvy and able to use the same one for contour, bronzer, and blush). 

I hope y'all found this post helpful! 

Please like, comment, share, follow, and subscribe! 

 Yours Truly,
The Lipsticks-Ninja

Social Media