Musings of a Muse

A Blog of Musings from a Cosmetic Whore

Oct 12, 2007

Bare Escentuals Smoky "V" Eye Kit Review

You may remember my prior post a week or two ago about this kit. If not click on over here to have a peek!

Bare Escentuals Smoky "V" Eye Kit

I just got this in the mail today so I thought I'd review it all for you. Originally I was excited about the very interesting little brush this came with but after trying it for myself I'm up in arms about how I feel about the entire kit, including the brush.

I'm very confused whether I like this or find it useless. Mixed emotions here and it's very difficult to say whether I can recommend this or say don't bother. At this point I'm sort of leaning towards don't bother but I am also feeling like this is a kinda sorta ok kit for people that find application difficult.

Hell I'm clueless when it comes to doing makeup application but I think I do ok and my blending isn't all that bad. this is a tough one.

I guess I should start by saying that the eyeshadow this came with, pacific heights, is boring as sin and not very pigmented. You really have to work this bad boy in to get some color payment on your lid. The glimmer it came with, 1990's, is a very nice shimmering shade of purple and pretty pigmented. I guess this evens out the score because to achieve the look you need a good light shade (pacific heights in this case) and a nice darker shade (1990's).

1990's Glimmer and Pacific Heights Eyeshadow

The instructions are perfect on this. I really, really give them props for good presentation on the packaging with the instructions being simple and easy to follow and very detailed!

The brush doesn't work exactly the way I thought it would. It's a bit difficult to use and it makes my completed smoky eye look more like a bruised eye. Maybe I need a bit of practice with the brush. Overall I'd say the brush could be a handy tool with a bit of practice.

The look it creates is similar to the picture of the girl on the cover which is a purple slanted upwards eye look. However, I'm not really getting a smoked out look to my eye after completing all the steps and using what was provided in the kit.

At least not my idea of a smoky eye look.

Can you achieve this with another brush in your collection? Yes. Do you need the kit and brush to do it? No.

I guess I'd say I recommend this for people who haven't quite mastered eyeshadow application correctly. The instructions are a pure treat and explain in simple terms exactly how to achieve the look! The brush is good and I think it may have the potential to be great with a little practice using it. The glimmer is nice but I'm not so impressed with the shadow.

Nay or Yay?

Nay. I'd skip it. Unless, like I said, you want to learn more about shadow application and have the bucks to lay out!

Only digging the brush?

No problem! Check E-bay! Dozens around for sale!

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"I Love Dior" Deluxe Holiday Palette

Wait a second....

The Muse decided to get the keys to her beauty vault and pull out her Dior D'Trick palette to compare it to the new "I Love Dior" Deluxe Holiday Palette. Upon originally seeing the deluxe holiday palette I was racing around in circles in excitement but today I wandered onto Nordstrom to see a close up picture of it and to my shock it appears that the "I Love Dior" palette is the Dior D'Trick palette in new clothes!

Hey stop the train I wanna get off!

This is so not right! How could they crush my desire for this so easily?

What the hell?

Everything looks exactly the same right down to the lipgloss!!!!!!!

I purchased my Dior D'Trick palette from the YesAsia beauty section one year ago sometime in July or August.

Granted stateside we get none of the special bits that Asia and Europe get. I guess I shouldn't be all that surprised that the palette is identical to the D'Trick.

I have to say I actually like the D'Trick's pretty pink packaging better anyway!

I believe I paid $72 for the D'Trick and I'm curious to see what the "I Love Dior" will cost.

I also have one other palette similar in style that was purchased in a UK airport at a Duty Free shop. That has entirely different colors than these two thankfully.


Maybe I'm wrong but it appears these are one and the same. Which is good news because I have a few dollars extra to add to my growing MAC wish list but it's also crushingly disappointing as I adore Dior.

Le sigh.

Count the Muse heartbroken!

Back to the vault to stow away the D'Trick palette!

"I Love Dior" Deluxe Holiday Palette as seen on Nordstrom

Dior D'Trick Palette

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Tarte We Wish You Wealth Palette

Hello There!

Well it's quite dark out and quite cold (38 degrees) and the Muse thinks that Friday night is best spent home in her warm, cozy bed with her powerbook tucked safely on her lap and Torchwood playing on her telly (God Bless the man that made Tivo otherwise the Muse would be unable to rewind and hit pause on scenes that contain John Barrowman in all his glory).

While the Muse catches up on episodes she missed what better way to spend some of her time then blogging about her favorite topic.....Cosmetics ;)

I had mentioned I ordered the Tarte We Wish You Wealth Palette for a friend this week and it arrived just today tucked safely in a Sephora box with a bright red ribbon tied around it!

Many of you asked after this palette and wondered if it was worth purchasing and if I was going to purchase it, etc...

This is not on my wish list and I won't be purchasing it however I can give you my first impression from viewing my friend's palette and let you know if I think you should or should not get it.

First of all obviously if you're a Tarte fan this is of course on your wish list and by default you're in want mode. If you're not a Tarte fan or never purchased Tarte prior to this I'd say here's your really big chance to nab something that Tarte is virtually giving away for free (it's that cheap! In price not quality!).

There is ALOT of hype around this palette and if you happen to spend every waking moment (or some waking moments) on MUA you know how crazed people are about this. It's gathering a cult following and it's reaching Sephora Blockbuster Palette heights (you remember that drama last year don't you?! No? E-mail I'll happily provide you with the delightful details).

Now the hype is there for obvious reasons and that would be price, quality, quantity, and of course obsessive compulsive cosmetic collector's NEED (I have this disease).

First of all price. The palette is $52 and with that amount you get yourself quite a stash of delightful goodies to play with. Let's discuss quantity and what you're getting for your $52 bucks.

Here's what's inside the palette:
16 brand-new eyeshadows (Full Size)
16 brand-new lipglosses
4 gel eyeliners
4 cheek stains
3 24/7 lip sheers
Eyelid primer
Eyeshadow & eyelining brushes

Now if you take 16 and you multiply it by $17 each per a shadow you come out with the grand old total of $272. Tarte is basically giving you $272 worth of shadows in this palette. They want to be nice to you this holiday season it seems. The colors aren't particularly eye popping but they are soft and shimmering shades that can create a perfectly elegant look. So you're getting 16 eyeshadows plus they decided to throw in a buncha of other awesome stuff.

Ok so the thing that caught my eye was the lipglosses they are perfectly wearable and quite gorgeous shades. Can you count to 16? That's what they slapped in here. 16 glosses to go with those 16 shadows I just mentioned!

The rest my friends is just bonus material. Cheek Stains, Eye Liners, and more await you in this palette.

I'd say you can create quite a nice group of looks just using the one palette all year long! I have tried Tarte shadows and I can report they are pigmented, I've tried their glosses as well and can say those too are of high quality. I've tried many Tarte products and all are good solid products so the quality is there in this palette for sure!

Overall this is a sweet palette however it does have it's faults. I'm not loving how it opens.

It slides open on a slant and folds back. And I think this has the potential to make a major mess sadly. All I can say is if you get it use caution when opening and closing it.

The design of the case is pretty gorgeous. It's quilted and deep, dark purple in color. Beautiful really. I'm duly impressed at the small size and all that's tucked inside of it.

One tiny stupid pet peeve would be that they only included one sponge applicator for the eyeshadows. Sheesh couldn't they throw in like 6? 3 on either side or something? What the heck can you do with one?

I also picked up the We Wish You Happiness Mini Cheek Stain Kit with this (Again, not mine for a friend) and I'm so chuffed at the cute box these come in. It's purple and quilted too and goes fantastic with the We Wish You Wealth palette! It has a gold snap, large mirror, and will be a perfect little case for carrying around makeup and other bits! This is the best case they have done with the minis! I'm really loving this guy.

Overall, I'd say this is a perfect gift for someone or for yourself. It's ALOT of bang for your buck and well worth a purchase.

I'm personally not getting one because it's not something I'll make proper use of. My eyeshadow tastes run to the more extreme and as much as I am loving the glosses it's not worth the price for me to just use the glosses! If you're a great lover of highly shimmering shades of color than this isn't for you. The eyeshadows do contain some shimmer but not enough to make me want them!

If you're wanting this I highly suggest nabbing it now because if the hype continues I imagine you'll wake up sometime at the end of the month or middle of November and see it out of stock, never to make a reappearance! Gone, disappeared, finished. And you'll sadly hang your head and cry that you have to fulfill your need by purchasing it on E-bay for triple the price! Personally everyone is going to be reaching for this during the Sephora Friends and Family discount or at least a majority of the masses will be so don't expect to wait till then to get it. If you're REALLY wanting it, get it now before it's too late.

The Muse most definately recommends it for purchase!

Enjoy the pics (apologies but I kept the protective film on the palette as this isn't mine and I need to take special care of it for the special person I ordered it for!)

Tarte's We Wish You Wealth Palette and We Wish You Happiness Mini Cheek Stain Set

16 Full Size Eyeshadows

16 Luscious Lipglosses (My Favorite Part of the Palette)

4 gel eyeliners, 4 cheek stains, 3 24/7 lip sheers, Eyelid primer, Luminizer, and eyeshadow & eyelining brushes

Palette Fully Opened

Tarte's We Wish You Happiness Mini Cheek Stain Collection

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Bit o' Brown FOTD

How to make big brown eyes pop? Get your copperclast pigment out ;) I guarantee you'll be singing Brown Eyed Girl while applying!

What I Used:
MAC Copperclast Pigment
MAC Rushmetal Pigment
MAC Paintpot in Constructivist
MAC Eyeshadow in Goldbit
MAC Eyeshadow in Cosmic
MAC Eyeshadow in Beauty Burst
MAC Technakohl in Black
MAC Technakohl in Plank


Army Green FOTD

A bit of green on a cold October Day!


L@@K! It's the Muse in her makeup room!

What I Used:
MAC Copperized Pigment
MAC Olive Green Pigment
Bare Escentuals Glimmer in Envy
Bare Escentuals Glimmer in Sunshine
MAC Quick Frost Pigment
MAC Technakohl in Black
Vincent Longo Wet Diamond Eyeshadow in Verite


Givenchy's Diamantisimme Holiday Collection

Santa cutie, fill my stocking with a duplex and cheques! Sign your 'x' on the line! Santa cutie, and hurry down the chimney tonight!

Come and trim my Christmas tree with some decorations bought at Tif-fa-ny! I really do believe in you, lets see if you believe in me!

Oh my I got a bit carried away there! I was feeling the Christmas spirit as I ripped (and bit) through the fedex box that arrived on my doorstep from Saks today!

Inside was Givenchy's Diamantisimme holiday collection! Oh my the very my! Just the pick me up I needed today!

I ended up getting all of the collection aside from the nail varnishes.

First off, which I'm sure you're all dying to hear about, would be the Prisme Solitaire Precious Diamond All Over Powder.

What's to say really?

It's perfection. The box is too cute for words! It's in the shape of an engagement ring box(could possibly be more exciting than a ring lol) and inside is the most precious, glittering, shimmering powder I've ever had the pleasure of laying my eyes on.

It's perfectly fantastic that it's multitasking as both a face, body, and eye powder. I love multitasking products and this is no exception to the rule.

The powder is slightly grainy in texture and that, my friends, does not bother me one bit.

I think I can safely say this may not make it onto my face! Bit to discoball in effect but my eyes and cleavage will thank Givenchy for such a perfect powder full of gorgeous bits of silver and white shimmer!

The powder is of course pigmented so it's not going to take a whole lot to make you look gorgeous!

The only difference with this palette is there is no where to store the brush it comes with. Givenchy palettes and powders always have that nifty little bottom chamber to tuck your brush under but this sadly lacks that. The brush comes in a velvet carrying case but can't be stored in the palette or on top of the powder. I don't really mind because the cute ring box is adorable and totally makes up for the fact that you can't store the brush inside it.

Next up the Crystal Pop Gloss which is equally gorgeous as the powder and full of lovely shimmering bits and pieces to keep me delighted all holiday season long! Two colors are available which would be Pure Diamond and Fancy Diamond. I'm loving the Fancy Diamond the best of the two. it's a lovely shimmering pink shade. The Pure Diamond is a clear gloss with silver, white, and tiny specks of pink shimmer!

Beautiful just beautiful!

According to my MA at Saks the Captiv' Eyes Mascara is a hot seller and only three were left! It looks like an amazing mascara. It's black with tiny specks of silver shimmer in it. Whether or not the silver will show upon application remains to be seen but it sure does look pretty!

I purchased the Rogue Interdit in Rose Desire as well but this purchase was a bit blind folded. I've only seen photos of the collection and this item looked the least appealing! But at the risk of missing out on something major I told my MA stick that in the bag too please. I should have waited and seen it in store because it appears it's a bit too "mod" pink for me. It's a matte pink color and it has that weird "mod" look to me. A la Twiggy. Anyone know what I mean? I'm in high debate whether to try it or return it. If you're ordering online don't bother with this until you've seen it in store to determine if it's the right shade for you.

Last but never least would be the Lash Sparkles! Ok I've seen images of this as well and wasn't sure about the application on it but assumed it would be like the Dior Lash Pearls from Christmas '05 (Believe it was 2005 correct me if I'm wrong) and even thought I knew what to expect I'm still a tiny little bit disappointed. Application is a brush wand (instead of the plastic applicator like the Dior Lash Pearls) where you twist up and the product disperses on the brush. I always, always find these difficult to work with because too much product pushes into the brush and causes a major mess (and waste). I haven't twisted it up so I can't tell you how these are yet. I'm sorta at that stage where I'm being maternal towards the collection and whispering to it how pretty it is while stroking it lovingly. I don't yet have the nerve to twist because I'm worried about product waste! As soon as I go to wear these, you my friends, will be the first to know and see what the product looks like!

The Lash Sparkles can be used two ways which would be brushing them on to encrust your lashes with sparkle OR applying from the brush onto the tips of your lashes to create a beaded look. This is a nice option as the Dior Lash Pearls only gave you an option to create a beaded look due to the applicator which is to say that the Givenchy Lash Pearls from last year allowed you to do both, brushing and beading!

Dior's Lash Pearls (This too makes for tricky application! But I think that the Givenchy Brush could save me waste as compared to the Dior Lash Pearls because once it's twisted the product has no where to go! At least with the Lash Sparkles it can be disputed on the brush and sort of saved!)

Givenchy Lash Pearls Holiday '06 (These are by far the easiest to use and I loved this entire package! I wish the new lash sparkles came the same way!)

Overall this collection is stupendous and just gorgeous!

If you're on a budget I'd grab at least the powder, mascara, and lash sparkles. If you're not I'd say grab it all!

Does anyone have the collection? What are your thoughts!? Comment box open and at the ready!

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Oct 11, 2007

Philosophy Essential Oil Sets

Remember way back in the day when The Body Shop had essential oils for relieving stress, waking you up, calming you, etc...

I remember being in High School at the time and one in particular that my friends and I had toted around was a wake up temple oil that smelled of cooling peppermint. You'd take it and place a bit on the temples of your head and on the pulses of your wrist and supposedly this would keep you awake through long lectures (in my case it was the religious study ones that put me out like a light! I went to an all girls private catholic school which meant an hour and a half of religious instruction twice a week!).


Philosophy has recaptured this idea and are selling essential oil sets. I find the entire idea sort of intriguing. Especially since the descriptions sound really interesting! Logically speaking I don't think the smell of lavender is going to make me sleep but hey at least it comes in a cute gift box right?

They have two sets available with two oils per gift set (.12oz) for $25.

Philosophy 'Stuffies & Stressies'
has two oils with congestion-relieving eucalyptus to give you the pick me up you need during the yucky flu season!

Of course 'Stuffies and Stressies also promises to relieve anxiety and stress! The Muse needs a liter of this stuff as her anxiety and stress levels are full on lately.

Obviously, I'm not buying the stress and anxiety relief but I am intrigued to see if it helps my stuffy nose during a harsh cold!

Philosophy 'Sleepies & Weepies' is another set the Muse can use as it promises to fight fatigue *yawn*! It also happens to ease depression and make you happy! And just as I was saying earlier, it does all this through the cooling scent of peppermint and citrus oils!

Cool right?

Well the bad news is if you're depressed, tired, feeling stressed, or just sad I hate to say it but I doubt essential oils are going to help but the good news is these make damn cute novelty gifts ;)

Wanna relieve your stuffies, stressies, sleepies and weepies? Head on over to Nordstrom to purchase these cute gift sets for yourself!


Stila Holiday Collection Palettes

I dare do say that I spy with my little eye on the Stila site the new holiday palettes.

The Muse isn't thrilled with these, but who knows I may be upon actually seeing them in person, at the moment they really aren't anything I am writing home about.

I know at least one other Stila Fan that probably won't think much of these either.

The palettes are $34 each and available for purchase right now on the Stila site! If you're yearning these it's possible the 20% off coupon is still working! Click here to get the details about the coupon!

Each palette contains three eyeshadows, one blush, and a lipgloss.

Stila Guinevere's Deluxe Palette

Stila Scarlett's Deluxe Palette

Stila's also added up a few holiday sets which can be seen by clicking here.

An interesting, but boring, Holiday collection for Stila. I'm pretty happy, this saves me money when I am yearning many, many, many other things at the moment!

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Guerlain Forever Gold

Quickie Post...I know I know but I'm not yet off the Guerlain topic! How sick!

Wanted to update you on the size of the Forever Gold which is 0.35oz for $72!

EEP! Kinda we need two?

The Muse finds it difficult to practice control when forever and gold are in the same sentence....!

Logically speaking I'm curvy and round so I can't dust myself with 0.35oz of gold in one go. I may need 10 of these to cover my entire body!

If you happen to be in the Muse's gorgeous city head on over to Saks and have a look at the collection its now available for your purchasing pleasure!

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Guerlain Holiday 2007 Price List

Hello there!

Here's a quickie compiled list of the prices for the Guerlain Holiday Collection.

I was curious how much Forever Gold was going to be and had nightmares about it being $175 or something obscene.

I'm happy to report that the collection is affordable. If you're an avid collection you'll consider this not bad for the price range. I really expected much worst.

Here's a look (all prices USD)

Forever Gold $72
Meteorites Gold Temptation Pearls $49
Golden Lash Topcoat Mascara $30
Ombre Eclat Euo & Liner $50

I didn't get the prices for the gloss or the lipsticks but they are normally in the $26-30 range.

The only thing that is far above my price range is the pressed meteorites powder which is a whopping $155 per compact. I figured as much since the pressed compacts are normally obscene amounts at Neiman's.

I was hopeful that the compact would be somewhere in the $99 range but ado we can't have everything in life and sometimes we have to know our own limits.

The good news is for about $200 (plus tax) you can nab a majority of the important pieces in the collection and make them your very own!

What are you getting?
Love this collection?
Hate it?

Talk to me!

Comment box at the ready!

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MAD Minerals FOTD

I was browsing around FOTD's the other day and I came across a most delightful FOTD that I just fell in love with!

The lovely Julie has granted the Muse's request to feature it on Musings of a Muse. How exciting our first guest FOTD!

I was so delighted with this FOTD that I went and ordered all the minerals she used to create the look! For about or under $10 bucks you can create the same look at MAD Minerals! Do check them out!

Fantastic job Julie! You've inspired the Muse!

If you have an FOTD you'd like featured do e-mail me at

How eye popping is this look?

primer - Monistat Soothing Care Chafing Relief Powder Gel
concealer - Medium
foundations - Natural Medium and Natural Medium Tan
finisher - Dude, I totally forgot to put powder on this morning! Eek.
blush - Modest Pink
highlight - Alyssa

What Julie Used:
Urban Decay Primer Potion
e/s - Spoiled - inner 1/2 lid, inner lower lashline M*A*D Minerals
e/s - Serenity - outer 1/2 lid M*A*D Minerals
e/s - Pizzazz - crease, banana, outer v, outer lower lashline M*A*D Minerals
e/s - Love - highlight M*A*D Minerals
e/l - Indelible Waterproof Gel: Black Cherry - upper and lower lashline M*A*D Minerals
brows - Smashbox: Taupe
mascara - L'Oreal Voluminous: Carbon Black, Maybelline Great Lash: Blackest Black

l/g - Wet 'N Wild MegaSlicks: #564A Cherish