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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Color Club Wild and Willing Swatches

This is my second favorite nail polish that I swatched this weekend. Wild and Willing is similar to the new Sally Hansen Lustre Shine Lava but not a dupe. It is not as vibrant, less duochromatic, and less metallic than Lava.
The formula is sheer and thin so on it's own you will need 3 coats.  The color shifts between a coral pink to, copper, and green. The green is very faint on the nails but more apparent when used over a black base.

I have it swatched over a black nail polish with two coats. The dark base gives it more depth and make the duochrome more noticeable I think.

Really loving this color. One you should own if you can get your hands on it.

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Camera Tips, Camera Settings, And How To Make The Most of It

This is my Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX9

Do you mainly use the auto option on your digital camera or do you also play with your camera settings? One of the most requested and asked questions my readers have asked me is how do I take such nice pictures and if I could do a tutorial. I apologize for the overdue post but here it is, finally. It's going to be a bit technical and lengthy but I'm gonna try to keep it simple as possible. I am not a professional photographer and these are not professional tips but they are things I have used personally to optimize the use of my camera and improve the quality of my pictures.

Digital camera nowadays come packed with a lot of options. They are not just point and shoot no more. To get the most use out of your camera, the first thing you need to do is get familiar with what it can do and how to use it. As much as I know how we all hate going through the user manual handbook, the truth is you will benefit a lot from reading it.

I am currently using a Canon Rebel T3i, which is a DSLR camera but prior to that, I've always used the typical digital cam. The benefit about using a DSLR camera are more setting options, sharper and better image quality, and ability to interchange lenses.
Regardless of whether you are using a DSLR or a digital camera, in order to produce quality photos, the key thing you should know is how to use it. Anyone can take really nice pictures if they know how to utilize the tools and settings that comes with their camera.

Shooting Mode
  • The shooting modes may slightly vary from one brand to another or from one camera to another. 
  • Some of the typical shooting modes are Auto, Scene Selection (portrait, night scene, landscape, macro, etc), and Program.
  • I typically prefer so shoot in Program mode because it allows you to customize certain settings. 
  • My second choice would be Macro mode and you would choose this mode if you are shooting at close range. It will allow your camera to focus on your subject and create a crisper and sharper image. On most camera, this mode has a flower icon. 

  • ISO is your camera sensitivity to light. Typically you wan to use a smaller ISO if you are taking pictures in bright lighting and increase your ISO when you are in low light. 
  • ISO also controls the Shudder Speed of your camera. The higher the ISO the faster your shudder speed will be. The faster your shudder speed, the less blurry your picture will be. I prefer to use a faster shudder speed for capturing something that is moving.
  • The trade off with using a higher ISO is more "noise" or grainy effect on your pictures. As a result, there will be a loss in quality and sharpness.

Camera Exposure Value
  • This setting will help you control the brightness or darkness of your picture. For instance, if you are taking pictures in bright light or your subject is bright, you'd want a smaller EV and if you are taking pictures in low light or your subject is dark, you may want to increase your EV.

Using The Flash
  • When using the flash, you have to consider the distance between your camera and the subject and adjust the EV and ISO accordingly. If your picture comes out too bright, you'll have to reduce either one or both the ISO and EV. 
  • Tip: when taking pictures outside on a bright sunny day, try it with your flash. You would think that you don't need flash under those condition but I've tried it with flash and sometimes, it turns out so much better. 

Image Size
  • May not be that important but something you should consider if you are often cropping your pictures. There will be a loss in quality and sharpness if you are taking pictures with a smaller size image and then cropping it later. If you know you will eventually crop your pictures, I would suggest you use a larger image size.
So to sum it all, if you know and understand how to manipulate the ISO and EV according to the type of lighting around your subject, you can optimize the outcome of your pictures. Most digital cameras have ISO and EV settings. I cannot recall the last time I saw one that didn't.
My advice is practice! Once you are familiar with how to effectively adjust these settings, you will get the most out of your pictures. I use the EV and ISO a lot (even with my DSLR camera)! They are the next best thing aside from perfect lighting because you can actually control them from your camera.

On a side note, if you missed out or didn't get a change to view my previous post about "Photo Lighting" you can check it out here.

Was this post helpful or not? Were you already using these settings or you weren't even aware that they exist? If you have been using them, how did they work out for you?

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

China Glaze Make a Spectacle (Halloween 2012)

So I did my usual weekend nail polish swatches and I have to say that this has been one of my favorite. I'll probably redo it tomorrow and wear it for the rest of the week.

This nail polish is currently available at Sally Beauty Supply but hurry because I can see it being the first one sold out. Need I say that if you are only going to pick one from the collection, this would be the one? The rest of the shades were just ok but Make a Spectacle is definitely a must have in my collection.  I layered it over a black nail polish so you can get a better idea of what to expect. On its own, it's hard to see how truly and potentially beautiful this polish is.

Make a Spectacle is a mix of large and micro iridescent yellow, green, and orange glitters in a clear base. It is definitely much more pretty in person. The formula is on the thicker side but still easy to work with and it does pack a punch of glitters in just one coat, which is what I have on the swatches.

Have you spotted this collection yet? Do you plan on getting this polish?


Fall Inspired Makeup Look

Hello there,

Been a while since I did a makeup look and I've been inspired to do a fall makeup look since it pretty feels like fall already.


  • I primed my eyes with Benefit Stay Don't Stray.
  • I appied NYX Mocha eyeshadow on 2/3 of my lids
  • I used MAC Red Brick on the outter V
  • On the cease, I blended a bright yellow eyeshadow Inglot Matte 323
  • I also used a bit of Inglot Pearl 450 on the outter V to deepen the orange color a bit
  • For highlight, I applied One Hit Wonder from the Bare Minerals Ready eyeshadow palette The Playlist.
  • I lined my upper lash line with Physicians Formula Eyebooster in Ultra Black.
  • On the outter lower lash line, I applied Milani Shadow Eyez Brown Deluxe
  • On the inner lower lash line, I applied NYX Jumbo Eyepencil in Yellow and set it with the yellow eyeshadow from Inglot.
  • I wanted my eyebrows to look burgundy so I used NYX Eyebrow Shaper, which acted like a sticky base. I applied Sexy from the Balm Nude'tude palette over my brows. I also used Inglot Pearl 450 to give it a bit more color.
  • I finished the look with some false lashes.

  • I lined my lips with NYX Lipliner pencil in Natural 810
  • I applied a light application of Rimmel London Kate #15

I hope you enjoyed this look and if you have some fall inspired makeup look, please let me know, I'd love to check them out too.

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Maybelline ColorShow Downtown Brown Swatches

Downtown Brown is new and limited edition color from Maybelline that I have been wanting to get since I saw swatches of it. It's a dark brown with red undertone and green shimmers.
If you were expecting some color shifting duochrome in this polish, you will be disappointed. The shimmers just sit on top of the color and that's about it. You get the same effect no matter which angle you look at it.
The brush was round, average quality, and average size.
I found the formula not too thick or too thin. It was finicky to work with. On the first coat, I carefully applied a medium coat and as it dried, it started creating streaks...Weird, I've never seen a polish do that as I watch it dry. On the second coat, it manages to pull and drag certain spots, creating uneven and blotchy areas. If you take a very close look at my nails, you'll see what I mean.

Overall, I like this shade but I don't love it. The formula leaves something to be desired. The color is nice, though I wish the shimmers were a little more noticeable.

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Sinful Colors Let Me Go

In the bottle, this shade shifts from blue to purple and teal. I was worried about how it would turn out on the nails but it was on sale for 99 cents when I bought it so I figure ok, if I end up not liking, I won't feel too bad.

 What I lilked
  • There is some color shifting but quite subtle
  • At certain angle, you can catch a glimpse of a very pretty blue sheen.

What I didn't like
  • It was sheer and nothing like how it looked in the bottle. I have 3 coats on the swatches.
  • It's obnoxiously frosty! Had it been less frosty, I would have loved it more.
  • Dries very slow but you'd still have to wait until it dries between coats so that you don't end up pulling and dragging the previous coat.
  • It has a tendency to pool so make sure you do thin coats to avoid that.
I don't like this polish on its own but I wore it about a week ago with some glitters on top and the glitters made it look prettier lol.

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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Haul - Some Random Nail Stuff

Hi Lovelies,

This is just a random haul from things I accumulated in the past few days. 

  • Kleancolor microbeads (set of 12 for $10). I found these at my local nail supply store. Thought it would be cool to finally try some caviar nail look. 

  • Also from the nail supply store, I purchased Wild and Willing from Color Club. It had some duochrome effect in the bottle and I was curious to find out if it is as pretty on the nails as it is in the bottle. This only cost me $2.50.

  • China Glaze Make A Specktacle ($4.99) just recently came out as part of their Halloween 2012 collection. I picked this baby up from Sally Beauty Supply. It was the only shade from the collection I felt like I had to have. It looks similar to Snow Globe but with more of a golden/green sparkle to it.

  • Also from Sally Beauty Supply, I got this cuticle remover and some wood sticks. 

  • I found this cuticle pusher and nail cleaner ($5.99) at TJ Maxx after I had already purchased the wood sticks. Oh well, the more the merrier, lol. 
  • Also from TJ Maxx, I was drawn to the organic looking packaging of this leave-in hair conditioner ($5.99) on the first picture above. I hope it works out for my hair.

That's it for this so called random haul. Have you picked up anything from the new China Glaze halloween collection?

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Rimmel London Kate 15 lipstick Swatch

I purchased this lipstick from CVS a few days ago. I haven't noticed it before so I am assuming that it must be a new shade. It was labeled as a layering shade, which I thought was interesting.

Rimmel London Kate 15 is a semi-sheer, shimmery, mauve taupe color with a frosty finish. There is a bit of slip to the formula which I can see why it would be labeled as a layering shade. On its own, it applies a bit blotchy. In spite of having a sheerness to it, if you layer it, I think it still packs a decent color payoff.

This shade may not be your cup of tea and I can imagine a lot of people finding it hard to pull off. It can make you look cold or sick, if that makes sense. If you do not like how cool toned lipstick look on you then you are definitely not going to love it. I like the fact that it's not too dark or vampy, which still makes it wearable.

As a layering shade, I think it works great. It will instantly add a cool undertone to any lipstick. This is perfect for fall and winter, IMO.

I'm light-skinned, NC25, and I personally like how it looks on me. If you plan on trying this shade, I think it will look best paired with dark smoky eyes. If you want to tame a bright lipstick, layering this lipstick over it will do the trick too.

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