Thursday, April 24, 2014


Hey y'all! I am dying of excitement to share my review of a brand new lipstick I bought this morning.  In fact my excitement is bouncing off the walls in my mind to the extent that I am not able to write a proper review. I have never posted a review along with pictures and swatches on the very same day as purchasing the product. I like to test out a product for a while before sharing my thoughts on it.  For this reason I am often too late in sharing my review of limited edition products.  

It seems like every time I blink my eyes, MAC releases a new limited edition collection.  I do not own very many MAC limited edition cosmetics.  These collections are difficult to keep up with - practically and financially.  Even though I adore the packaging of most MAC limited edition items, the actual product itself might not always be my cup of tea.  I cannot justify purchasing makeup for packaging alone. I purchased a lipstick and a blush from the Winter 2013 Divine Nights collection. More recently I purchased three lipsticks from the Huggables collection. This is the extent of my MAC limited edition makeup. 

Yesterday, Mr. Beau asked me what time I was going to wake up in the morning.  I told him bright and early. He asked me why. I told him that MAC Proenza Schouler collection is coming out.  He didn't understand. So, I explained to him that every time MAC releases a collection, it is like Black Friday at Walmart. Hyper women chasing after hyped makeup. 

I have never done this before. I reached the mall at exactly 9:50 a.m.  I was the first customer inside the Belk store. Honestly, I was a little let down that I didn't have to fight a crowd or stand in a line of women huffing and puffing, waiting to get their hands on the good stuff. I had imagined it to be a crazy experience. I had seen a preview of the collection on Temptalia, so I had my eyes set on the vivd coral-red lipstick called Mangrove. I paid about $24 and some change for this lipstick.  It costs a bit more than the permanent MAC lipsticks.  

Okay enough of sharing my experience. Let us move on to the actual review. I love this lipstick! I loved it before I even applied it.  In fact, I was hesitant to apply it at first because I didn't want to ruin the perfect hot coral-red-orange bullet. Personally, I think this is the best feature out of the entire collection.  I highly recommend this lipstick.  Although Temptalia mentioned that Mangrove is the most "dupable" shade out of the whole collection, I find that Mangrove is a very unique shade and a must-have.  

I have been searching high and low for vivid, bright, hot coral red-orange.  The formula is matte, but it feels nothing like a true-matte. I would describe it as a semi-matte because it feels much more comfortable and less rigid than the matte and satin formulas of MAC permanent lipsticks.  It glides on smoothly like a creme formula, yet does not have the slip of such an emollient formula. It is non-drying and does not emphasize lip lines or crevices. I hate matte formula that soak up all of the moisture and natural youthful look of lips, instead making lips appear parched and wrinkly. 

This is not such a matte.  This lipstick could not be any better - it is perfection as is! I have tried quite a few bright lipsticks, but was unimpressed by all because they appeared patchy, streaky, and stark on my lips as if I was trying to wear neon color mousse.  One swipe across the lips is enough for intense, opaque color.  All day today I have been thinking about purchasing a back up of Mangrove, which implies a lot because I don't have back ups of any products I use, except maybe shampoo and conditioner.  

I think the name of this lipstick is cute too.  Mangrove sounds tropical to me and makes me think of an area where colorful tropical fruits grow, like mangoes, pineapples, and papayas. As for the staying power, I would like to wear this lipstick a bit more and then report back.  The packaging is sort of tropical and festive too - reminds me of Mardi Gras beads, lush greenery, plantains, and a sunset on the beach. Can y'all tell by now that I am very happy with this purchase? 

Keep in touch with me via Instagram, where I post previews of upcoming reviews, hauls, and makeup looks. 

I hope this post was informative and helpful. Your friendly comments are much appreciated.  Come back soon. Thanks!
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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

MILANI POWER LIP Lasting and Moisturizing Lip Stains: Creamy Cafe, Macaroon, Raspberry Tart, Pink Lemonade, Mango Tango, Red Control, and Cabaret Blend

Hey y'all!  Everyone and their mothers have already posted a review on the new makeup releases by Milani this February.  The stores in my area only received the new lip glosses and matte blushes.  So, I assumed that I would not have the pleasure of trying out the other new lip products.  I had to make an unexpected visit home and spotted the Milani Power Lips at the local Walgreens and Meijer stores.  By this point though I had heard quite a few reviews, all of which gave me the impression that the Milani Power Lips were good, but not must-haves.  

As you can tell by the topic of this review, my reservation from buying the Milani Power Lips did not last long.  Once I heard that CVS was having a BOGO sale, I asked my Mister Beau to check if the CVS in his area carried all of the new Milani products.  Although Mister Beau was not too happy about this request, he cannot seem to say no to me because as soon as he attempts to say no, I pop up in his mind resembling either Bambi or Eyeore.  Well, thanks to my Beau I can present this review today.  I think I need to come up with a better mysterious term of endearment for him.  Mister Beau sounds like a Disney movie character, who wears a tuxedo, carries a cane, and spooks people by popping up out of smoke - a laughing Buddha-magician-jeanie hybrid. 

Hmm... don't know how or why I come up with such off tangent, verbose introductions.  Now, let us get on with our review! 

Availability / Price 
CVS, Walgreens, Meijer / $5.49 - $6.99 (pre-tax) 

Milani has packaged the Power Lip stains in a protective manner, which makes tampering difficult.  I like this method more than the traditional peel off plastic wrapping or seal. However, I am not a fan of the design of the lip color tube itself.  The product dispenses out by twisting the area underneath the brush tip applicator.  The problem with this mechanism is that I found myself twisting for a while before the product came out and when it did come out, it was too much.  It appears that there is not a lot of product to begin with, so obviously I would not want to dispense more than the amount I want to use.  Although the wand style - which exposes the product to air and bacteria as you take the wand in and out - may not be as sanitary as the twist up style, I would prefer it more.  

The shades Raspberry Tart, Red Control, Macaroon, Cabaret Blend, Pink Lemonade, Mango Tango, and Creamy Cafe are displayed from left to right in the picture below. 

 The shades Creamy Cafe, Macaroon, Raspberry Tart, Mango Tango, Pink Lemonade, Red Control, and Cabaret Blend are displayed from left to right in the picture below.

Please reference the pictures to get an idea of the shades available.  These shades are brighter and lighter (opposite of dull/subdued) than they appear in the following pictures.

(1) Cabaret Blend (2) Red Control (3) Pink Lemonade (4) Mango Tango (5) Raspberry Tart (6) Macaroon (7) Creamy Cafe

Formula / Application / Scent 
The Milani Power Lip stains are creamy, richly pigmented, and intensely glossy.  

Given that I purchased and kept (i.e., no returns = no regrets) seven of the eight total shades in the collection, my liking of these Power Lip stains is established.  I definitely like the concept of a liquid lipstick, but until recently I was not impressed by the formula of any that I have personally tried, with the exception of Shiseido Lacquer Rouge liquid lipsticks.  In the past few months, I have tried many liquid lip colors.  In fact, it seems like I only gravitate towards liquid lip colors these days. Perhaps this is because I have really enjoyed the formula of the new liquid lip products that I have been experimenting with, including the Milani Power Lip stains. 

I really like the consistency of the Power Lip stains; the product is neither thick nor thin. If thick, the product is usually difficult to apply and spread the product.  If thin, the product is usually sheer, streaky, or patchy.  The product here is packed with intense pigment, making one smooth swipe enough. The applicator and easily spreadable formula makes precise and clean application possible.  However, most people will want to apply this product carefully, using a mirror, because the high pigmentation can make the application messy.  

I did not experience / notice a particular taste or scent. 

Longevity / Staying Power 
The intense glossiness wears off into a subtle sheen.  The color wears off into a stain that is not subtle by any means. In my opinion, the Power Lip stains have a better than normal (4 hours) staying power.  Over the duration of the wear, the shades begin to look brighter and semi-matte (not true matte / not drying). The Power Lips are by no means true stains, but very impressive nevertheless.  I would not like wearing a true stain anyway.  

Overall, I am very fond of the Milani Power Lip stains and considered buying backups. If I had to gift or recommend an affordable liquid lipstick, I would choose Milani Power Lip stains.  The L'Oreal Extraordinaire Liquid Lipsticks, Maybelline Color Elixirs, and NYX Butter Glosses are all nice products, but the Milani Power Lip stains deserve first-place. 

I hope this post was informative and helpful. Your friendly comments are much appreciated. 
Come back soon. Thanks!
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