Musings of a Muse

A Blog of Musings from a Cosmetic Whore

Oct 6, 2007

The Weekend Beauty Shopper Steals and Deals


It's the Weekend and it's Fall which to me is a perfect combo for shopping ;)

Check out Last Week's Weekend Beauty Shopper Steals and Deals blog as some of the deals are still available to steal ;)

This week I have a small array of goodies for your shopping pleasure!

Sometimes it doesn't always have to be about beauty ;) Click and Print out this coupon and take it to your nearest Borders or Waldenbooks to receive 20% off a book, cd, or dvd of your choice!

Getting back to beauty...

Step into your local Bath and Body Works and stock up on anything from the signature collection! All items in the collection are 5 for $20! Lotions, Body Splashes, Shower Gel, Body Cream, and More!

Few more deals to be had at Bath and Body Works....Check it out:

Get the newest Apple Fizz Temptation Kit from Bath and Body Works at a discount of 50% you'll only pay $9.75 after discount! The kit includes body lotion, shower gel, and a lipgloss!

The Signature Hair Care line is $4 for the large 12oz bottles! Might the Muse suggest trying the Pineapple...Mmmm!

C.O. Bigelow Lemon Bodycare are Buy 1 Get 1 Free! This is a pretty great deal as the products generally run from $16-21 so you'll be getting two of those products for the same price! Sweet! Stock up and Save! The Muse adores the tart, sweet goodness of C.O. Bigelow Lemon Body Cream!

Free Shipping as always if you're shopping online! If you order total is $55 or more enter code FREESHIP55!

If you're a Beauty Perk Member at Sephora you can score a free full size Bare Escentuals Buxom Lipgloss in Amber with your $50 purchase! Just enter code AMBER to get your gloss!

If you happen to have some Givenchy Blush on your wish list you can nab them for $37 plus Free Shipping and a gift! Head on over to Strawberry Net to grab a free gift and discounted Givenchy Blush!

Remember when I was blubbering about Lush's newest haircare line up? Well now you can try one of the haircare products of your choice plus a bathbomb FREE! Spend $70 or more and choose one of three of the newest haircare items and one of two Christmas themed bath bombs free with your purchase! Use Coupon Code TEASEME.

Last but never least check out my blog about Stila's 20% Off Sale! Click here for details!

That's it for this Weekend's Steals and Deals! Get out there and shop, shop, shop! And don't forget Christmas is around the corner so get some early shopping in for the Holidays!

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Oct 4, 2007

Stila 20% Off Sale and Free Shipping

It's a little early for the Weekly Beauty Steals and Deals but let me share this with you!

Stila's website was down for a while but they are back and ready for business ;)

And to celebrate good times Stila is offering 20% off purchases of $50 or more plus freaking Free Shipping. Use Coupon Code WELCOMEBACK

I don't have to tell you what an awesome deal that is now do I?

Not sure what to buy? The Muse's cart is filled with the newest smoky eye palettes!

Go get 'em girls!

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Benefit Powder Pop

What if you spent $90 on these?

And Benefit offered to give you all of them in a box set for $30?

You'd obviously take the second choice wouldn't you?

Benefit is gifting us this Holiday Season with the Benefit Powder Pop Set (As originally seen on Kiss and Make-Up). And I do mean GIFT! This is a steal at $30 bucks! Grab yourself some Hula, Dandelion, and Dallas plus a mini brush all in one cute box!

Benefit Powder Pop Set

Benefit is slowly healing my emotional wounds from past purchases! I may not need therapy after all.

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MAC Beauty Powders Take 2

Thanks for being so patient with me while I wandered around in a daze this week ;)

And for your patience, as promised, I reward you with the MAC Beauty Powders Review and Pictures!

MAC Beauty Powders in Micro Pink and Natural Flare


I ended up purchasing two of the eights colors and I know at least four more of the colors that are on my wish list!

Ok these confuse me slightly as I thought MAC had previously released a similar product. The other reason I am puzzling would be I am unsure if these are being released via MAC anytime soon or if these are a MAC Pro exclusive. I thought I had seen something about the release being with the Holiday goodies but I am too lazy to go looking at the moment :) So don't quote me on that!

I ended up with Micro Pink and Natural Flare both of which I am very happy with! Micro Pink should probably be kept with the fair skin group because it may appear slightly chalky on a deeper skin type and Natural Flare is good for all skin types in my opinion.

I guess if you took a Mineralized Skinfinish and you cracked it up into finely milled powder and added a little sparkle you'd have a MAC Beauty Powder. Maybe it's me but that is what I am getting in terms of finish and texture on my face! Which is great because who doesn't want a loose powder format of Mineralized Skinfinish right? Plus sparkle? I'm all over that!

For those of you yelling boo at the sparkle have no fear it's a very natural finish and you're not going to look like you're ready for a night in a club or anything remotely glittery and loud. It applies with a nice, even finish and the sparkle is there but barely noticeable. These remind me of Bare Escentuals Rose Gossamer Powder for some reason!

MAC Micro Pink Beauty Powder and Bare Escentuals Rose Gossamer

I used Natural Flare this morning with a peach blush and it really made my blush pop up a little. It also made my blush a bit more subdued and natural looking!

Excuse the crummy eye make-up! Last few days I feel like I'm rushed in everything I do ;) So disregard the mucked up eyeshadow and concentrate on the gorgeous look Natural Flare gave my cheeks!

I normally reserve my 187 for applying Mineralized Skinfinish but it dipped happily into my pot of Natural Flare this morning and worked wonderfully to apply the powder! I think the 187, 188, or a small kabuki would be great for application! If you want more of a loose effect I'd try applying with a puffier brush such as the 129.

Overall, I'd say nab a few of these to add to your collection because they are quite good! I'm loving the two I got and hopefully will get the others that I'm currently wanting!

These are available via Phone from MAC Pro or if you happen to live near a MAC Pro store you can hop right in and purchase them for $21 USD.

My camera doesn't pick up swatches well and Micro Pink looked like I had nothing on however it did ok with Natural Flare.

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MuseTV Presents: Spotlight on Canmake

If I may, allow me to introduce you to a wonderful little Japanese Brand entitled Canmake.

Canmake is pretty much the bottom of the line in regards to cosmetics. It's a cheap and cheesy little brand that packs a baby punch of goodness :)

It's cute, usable, and inexpensive. If you're on a budget we are heading into the land of sweet cosmetics that will cost you a few dollars and leave you left over money for lunch! Yay! Canmake kinda reminds me of a time when I was 10 or 11 and Bonnie Bell was the epitome of fine cosmetics and if you had a lipgloss from Bonnie Bell you were the height of fashion, style, and sophistication (or maybe that was just me feeling this way hmmm).

MuseTV Presents: A Spotlight On Canmake Cosmetics

Canmake has both an English and a Japanese site. For some odd reason or another I enjoy visiting the Japanese site more than the American site, don't ask me why, we've already established I could be mental. Canmake's site is pretty darn helpful as they have diagrams for application all over the bloody place! I love user friendly sites don't you? This isn't something you'll find in any brand stateside so enjoy the helpfulness of the Japanese and take advantage of the great tutorials and how to's on some of these sites because I personally find them very helpful and just awesome!

Canmake has a HUGE catalog of goodies and I only have a few of the items they carry! The entire line is pretty darn big. They carry a little bit of everything. Glosses, Blushes, Skincare, Perfume, Etc...

One item that I failed to mention in my video that deserves a good healthy rave would be the Cheek Gradation. Basically this is a highlighter not a blush, which means don't try wearing it by it's lonesome, it's not nearly pigmented enough to make any difference on a bare skinned face. Apply your blush and afterwards apply the Cheek Gradation of your choice and Presto! Chango! You'll glow and elude a soft dewy look! Yum!

The Gradations I've used are 01, 04 (we'll take more about 04 in a second), and 02. Basically the Gradations give me a soft sparkle after using my blush and a cheaper Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick effect. I liked all the ones I have but my favorite would be the limited edition color 04. I don't normally like a bronzed look and 04 gives the appearance of being a somewhat bronzy color however, upon using it, you'll find out that it's the most pigmented of all the Gradations that Canmake makes. It could possibly be used alone as a blusher (I haven't tried that yet). 04 oringally started out as a limited edition shade but my little eye spies it on both the Japanese and the American site so if you have the means try and grab this gem! The Cheek Gradations run about $7 bucks each and hey if you're really wanting a Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick but the price seems just a little too much right now...spend $7 and get yourself a Canmake Cheek Gradation and call it a day ;) The Muse loves them and recommends them fully!

Canmake Cheek Graduations

01, 04, and 02

Canmake makes quite a few different shadows, most of which I've tried. Sadly, you can't expect too much from a Canmake shadow. Shadows are a good texture but they are very, very sheer depending on which shadow series you end up purchasing!

The first shadows I'll discuss are the Eye Nuanace Trios. These are tiny circular palettes that include three very workable shades! I should say that if you aren't a fan of pigmented shadows or you like a sheer, no nonsense, minimalist look, these are great! I've used these on many occasions when I am just not up for a full on eye makeup look! The trios always have colors that work well together so if you enjoy colors that are neatly organized you'll love these! I have six of these and my favorite of the lot is 11. The combos of green and yellow are just lovely and it goes on for a pretty nice look!

Canmake Eye Nuance

03, 14, 11, 12, and 09

Oooo this guy got left out of the group picture my mistake ;) Canmake Eye Nuance in 15

Overall, I'd say for around $5 you get what you pay for. If you have the means to get them do add them to you cart however, don't pay more than retail for them! That'd be a waste!

Next up on the eyeshadow line would be a favorite of mine, the Metallic Eyes single shadows. These little guys are great! They pack a nice sparkle to them and are pretty nicely pigmented for the price of $4.50 or so! I use these as a highbrow highlighter or an all over color wash. They go on pretty heavy with the first stroke and you can build the intensity as little or as much as you like! I give these a high recommendation because they do exactly what they promise!

Canmake Metallic Eyeshadow

01, 11, and 08

Another that falls into my favorite list is the Glitter Eye palettes. These are pretty cute palettes. What I failed to mention earlier is the packaging these all come in is really tiny and small so it makes great for toting around! Now the Glitter Eye palettes are a favorite however, you have to be aware that some colors are more pigmented and others are very sheer. These are a tad on the grainy side, think the middle color in the Lunasol Geminate Eye Palettes, of course it's not nearly as bad as that but as you get deeper into these palettes it gets a bit grainy. Most of the colors I can't use alone for a look unless I really want a minimal no makeup look but I do use them as washes of colors to prep my eye area or as a highbrow highlighter and they work a treat! Purchase 06 or 05 if you want to wear these alone as those are the most pigmented I've come across for these! For $5 a pop these are worth getting one or two of just to try! The Muse recommends them!

Canmake Glitter Eye Palette

06, 05, 04, 01, and 02

Almost done with shadows! Two more to go ;)

Next up the Dual Sparkle Shadow from Canmake. These are very sheer, so sheer they may be transparent. I don't get too much sparkle from these but the good news is they do a great wash of color to prep my eye area for something that packs a better punch. I can't say I don't recommend buying these because I actually do. At about $4.50 you can't afford not to at least try one or two! The colors offered are pretty nice and the shadows have a good, smooth texture to them.

Canmake Dual Sparkle Shadow

03 and 02

Finally on our list is another favorite of mine! The Glow Twin color are pretty darn pigmented for the price of $5.50 each. These are fantastic for a really, super quick make-up look! Darn good multitasking shadow in that you can create a simple look, use them as highbrow highlighters, use them as color washes, or even dip a blush brush in and powder your cheeks with them for some sparkle! The texture is very smooth and almost creamy when applied. I find that the top color has a bit more shimmer than the bottom color. The bottom color almost appears matte in texture compared to the top! I really like these and give them a big thumbs up ;)

Canmake Glow Twin Color Shadows

03 and 02

Canmake has a really nice size line of glosses! I've only tried the Lip Essence and it goes right onto the recommendations list. It's one of the few Japanese Brands that I've seen a sponge applicator with, as much as I like the spatula style applicator, sometimes it's nice to have a sponge one ;)

Canmake Lip Essence

Colors: Lip Essence and 02

The gloss is nice and slick minus any tacky, sticky feelings! The colors are very nice and you can wear them alone for a nice wash of gloss, shine, and a tiny bit of color. My favorite is 02 it gives me a nice reddish pink kissed look! $6 or so each and the Muse says it's a steal for a great gloss!

Our Canmake Spotlight comes to an end with the Super Glitter Liner! Looking for a cheap inexpensive glitter liner? Well, here it is! Works just as well as the MAC Glitter Liners, or Too Faced, or Pop, or any of the other designer brands that put out Glitter Liners ;)

Canmake Super Glitter Liners

01, 03, and Limited Editon 04

These liners are about $5 each and are perfect for adding a little sparkle to your lower and upper eye line! Wanna get the most bang for your buck? Use them as a liner, use them to smooth onto your lashes for a bit of sparkle, use by patting ont your shadow for some extra POP!

Another fine product from Canmake!

That's all for today my friends! I hope you enjoyed getting to know more about my favorite inexpensive brand of cosmetic, Canmake! If you have any questions do give a shout and I'm happy to answer ;)

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Reader's Request: Angels On Bare Skin Tutorial

A lovely reader left a wonderful comment for the Muse and had asked a question in regards to Lush and using Angels on Bare Skin.

I've discussed Lush a plenty on my blog as it's part of my main skincare/bodycare/haircare regime so I pimp it as much as possible as I've had such brilliant results with it and of course when it works good the Muse must pass that info onto all you lovely ladies :) I'm positive you recall my rather long post about Lush prior to this but if you happened to miss it do click here and have a look!

Now her question was about a product called Angels on Bare Skin. Angels on Bare Skin is a Preservative Free Face Cleanser. First time users may be confused how exactly to use it!'s a tutorial for Stephanie and anyone else who was interested in the best way to use Angels on Bare Skin!

Stephanie thanks for your comments and your question! I hope this helps!

MuseTV Presents: Angels on Bare Skin Tutorial

(If the video doesn't play right away please try back in a few)

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Spotlight Week Continues But First a Word from Our Sponsors!

Hello there!

My Spotlight on Japanese Cosmetics will continue sometime later today or tonight depending on how busy I am :)

While you're waiting for the newest entry please check out one of my old Spotlights!

Click below to view it!

MuseTV Presents: A Spotlight on Majolica Majorca


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The Inner Geek Minus the Cosmetic Geek

If you happen to be as geeky as the Muse you'll enjoy this clip I came across while wondering around on Wil Wheaton's blog this morning!

Absolutely nothing to do with cosmetics but I really need a good laugh and a smile today and most times when I am reading Wil's blog or seeing some keynote he's done here and there I just have to laugh! Seriously, who doesn't love a Geek that's animated when speaking?

My favorite part is the "Enterprise" reference!


Just to add I've seen Wil speak at several conventions, etc..prior to this and to watch it on video and see it in person is probably quite different but you can still feel his "life" in his words!

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Oct 3, 2007

MuseTV Presents: Spotlight on Lavshuca

I know quite a few people were excited and eager for the Lavshuca video! So here it is ladies!

MuseTV Presents: A Spotlight On Lavshuca Cosmetics

Lavshuca, like T'estimo, Tiffa, KATE, disturbed by Kanebo. You'll do well to remember the name Kanebo because they put out some fantastic cosmetic brands!

Lavshuca falls into my favorite group and I adore it! The brand is girlish and sweet and packs a whole lot of wonderful into such delicate packaging! I haven't run across many items in the line that I don't love but aside from those the rest have been amazing in the long run and the products are aces with the Muse!

On the top of my list of Lavshuca products would have to be the Eye Color Select palettes. These palettes have four separate eye colors that just work. I can't say enough about how I love palettes that have colors that just work! This is a no brainer! I don't have to use a whole lot of imagination, I don't have to be confused with which color would go with the other, etc...the palette has four colors and all four just work together. One fantastic thing about Japanese cosmetics is that most all brands come with a great tutorial for application so if you're somehow confused about what color should be where have no fear there are simple instructions right on the back of the packaging or on the website that will guide your hand in perfect application using the palette (Of course the instructions are in Japanese but their is a diagram with colors labeled as 1,2,3, etc...).

Eye Color Select Palette

I believe I have all of the Eye Color Select palettes and each one is more perfect than the last! The colors are packed full of shimmer which by now is obviously something you know I love. The palettes are pigmented and the packaging is so sweet and pretty! The price is just right as well!

BU1, PU2, and BR1

PK1, PU1, and BR2

I highly recommend nabbing these. Several shops online sell Lavshuca and the most reasonable I've come across would be Adam Beauty, JPmon, and Hi Japan. Palettes on these sites run from $14 USD or so.

Since we are on the topic of eyeshadow we might as well discuss Lavshuca's latest palettes the Grade Color Select. I think myself and a few others were wondering if Grade Color Select would be replacing the Eye Color Select palettes. At first it was unclear if this was a new style packaging or a new product. I'm happy to report that upon Grade Color Select's release late this summer (for Lavshuca's Fall Collection) that they also introduced a new Eye Color Select color which put my mind at ease that my beloved Eye Color Select palettes are here to stay (for now).

Lavshua Grade Color Select Palette

Grade Color Select is not nearly as good as the Eye Color Select but in their own right they have alot going on for them! The palettes are designed a bit different in mind and possibly easier in regards to the look you'll be accomplishing with these palettes. Basically it's pretty mapped in which are the shadows, which is the base color, and which is the liner. The base in these palettes is possibly my favorite item when prepping my eye area and I tend to use the base as an all over wash of color even when I am not using the rest of the colors in that particular palette! It's a nice shimmering shade that's perfect for highbrow highlighting and just an all over color to begin your eye look! Unlike many Japanese brands, the base color, is in fact a powder and not a cream. These palettes aren't as full of shimmer as the Eye Color Select palettes not to say they don't contain shimmer, they do, just not as much as their sister palette. The liner is pretty versatile in that it can be used as a shadow if you please. The entire palette is definately pigmented and long wearing but still I must say that the Eye Color Selects are far better in quality, pigment, and shimmer.

The palette style is much more easier to work with than the Eye Color Select in my opinion. I like the straight across color design and as cute as the "flower blossom" look is on the Eye Color Select I have a bit of a hard time when working around each color. These are lined up in a neat row and make my application much easier! They are, of course, cute as pie too! I'm always in high debate with myself which design of the palettes I like more of the two and I lean slightly towards the Grade Eye Select as a favorite in style. They are smaller than a credit card and so smart and sweet to tote around for touch ups! The colors all work perfectly together. Price wise they are the same as the Eye Color Select and run from $14 USD or so!

PU1, BR1, and PK1

GN1, BU1, and BE1

I definately recommend these but if you have to choose between the two styles of palettes my heart lays with the Eye Color Select for shimmer quality.

Lavshuca makes a very cute, compact, and sweet lipstick entitled Jewel Lips. Now there are several reasons to love this great product. Believe it or not the main reason to love it would be it's size! When I had purchased my very first Jewel Lipstick I had thought it was a full size product however, upon receiving it I was shocked to see it was actually a tiny, mini lipstick! Why is this exciting? It's exciting because I have many lipsticks and glosses in my collection and these are just the right size! Does anyone truly get through a full size lipstick? Even when my collection was far smaller than it is today I don't think I ever got through a full size lipstick! These make for easy storage, little waste, and are just cute as a button! What more could a girl want?

Lavshuca Jewel Lips Lipstick

The colors are pretty outstanding and they go on very smoothly with plenty of moisture! There are plenty of American brands that promise moisturizing lipstick but I've never across one that actually came through on the claim. These go on with a slightly slick feeling, so, gloss is entirely optional as you already have a nice sheen of color!

The colors aren't at all heavy so if you enjoy a more minimal, natural look these would be perfect for you. Price wise they are about $9 USD each which is kinda sorta steep depending on how you think about. We can all nab a lipstick from MAC for a few dollars more but we won't get a cute packaged item for that price ;)

Lavshuca Jewel Lips Lipstick compared to a MAC full size Lipstick

I recommend these highly if you have a rather large collection or just love cute, girlish items!

Color Conc Rouge is the next item on the Lavshuca block and it gets my poor review sadly. I so wanted to love these! Please click here to view my prior impressions of this lipgloss!

Lavshuca's Color Conc Rogue Lipgloss

PK2, RD2, BR1, and RD1

There isn't much to say about Lavshuca's newest gloss without rehashing what I had said in a previous review of the gloss. They are very cute in packaging but the product itself is a mystery in regards to application and getting a smooth, even look. It's still in debate whether the formula of the gloss is at fault or the actual package design. Read my prior blog to see how I felt about these glosses!

I'm always on the look out for the next best thing to make my eyes pop. Lavshuca has a great line of glitter mascara that's just great! They have two colors available for these mascaras, one being a silver and the other a multicolor bluish purple color.

Basically you use these on top of your regular mascara. Apply a coat of your favorite mascara, wait a sec for it to dry, and apply a coat of the Lavshuca glitter mascara. Ahhh..perfect sparkling eyelashes!

The mascara basically encrusts your eyelashes with fine particles of glitter that, when caught by the light make your lashes sparkle and shine!

Lavshuca Glitter Mascara

The application is a breeze due to the nice bend in the mascara wand! Don't be scared by this as it really doesn't make you appear over done in any way! It's a great product for around the holidays but it's also equally very wearable for day to day use.

Overall, I adore these and can't recommend them enough! I just wish they had more colors available ;)

Finally on our list is the Lavshuca liner. I'm not normally a big fan of liquid liner. When I wear liner it's normally either pot form or pencil with a few rare exceptions! The Lavshuca liquid liner is pretty darn fantastic and personally I think it's great for women that either are liner beginners or have a problem applying liner.

Lavshuca Liquid Eyeliner Pencil

The liner applicator is very, very, very thin and skinny. It's one of the thinest applicators I've seen in all my cosmetic travels. Don't let it fool you into thinking it can't create a large line it can multitask it's way into applying a thin line of product or a larger dramatic line. The liner is pretty much a snap to use because of it's ultra skinny applicator in my opinion.

The Muse highly recommends this for beginners and advanced users alike!

A product not featured in my video would be the Lavshuca Loose Powder. Lavshuca creates a loose powder that is similar in fashion to the Jill Stuart line! In this case it's a sparkling loose powder with a cute ribboned puff. Pretty much on the same level as the Jill Stuart Loose Powder. It's nothing that I don't already have in regards to a powder but I think the packaging is ultra cute and the powder itself gives a lovely sheen to a complete makeup look!

As much as I love Lavshuca it's not without it's flaws in my humblest opinion. One of which would be the blush. I've tried two styles of Lavshuca blushes one of which was the Cheek Select (no longer available) and the other would be their single blush line.

Now as fantastic and wonderful as the line is they have somehow failed in the blush category. I know several people who liked both the Cheek Select and Single Blushes sadly, I can not lay claim to loving these products.

Lavshuca Single Blush

Lavshuca Cheek Selects (Top Row) and Single Blushes (Bottom Row)

The blushes lack pigment and are far to sheer for the Muse! So one product, in my opinion, to skip, would be the blush.

In the future I have high hopes Lavshuca will introduce a better blush lineup but for now I'm steering clear of what is available :(

I hope you enjoyed learning more about this wonderful little Japanese Brand! If you have any questions do comment away! If you happen to own any of these products please let us know which and why you love them!

Tomorrow I'll be exploring a new Japanese Brand until then I bid you good night!

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