Thursday, May 29, 2014

My first ever BITE Lipstick :)

I discovered this beautiful community named "Beautylish" while surfing through the "Editor's Choice" Section in Google Playstore back in Dec '13 and I am hooked ever since. It's an online community, available as an app for mobile devices (Beautylish on Android) and also as a website. It's full of makeup tips, beauty looks, product reviews and some exclusive brands to purchase. The best part is its makeup enthusiastic members who are always keen on helping each other and I have been totally enjoying its positive environment. I should actually write another blog-post about it :)

I have been sparingly hearing about Bite Beauty lip products on YouTube. I was eager to use Sephora's Spring 15% off coupon and my Beautylish friends strongly recommended me Bite's lipsticks. I did a quick study; its packaging as well as "all natural brand" tag intrigued me. I decided to bite the bullet and get an everyday shade. However in the store, it was a completely different story! Because of the sale, it was very crowded  and there were so many shades to swatch. I was also running out of time. I picked up the tester in "Cin Cin" and dabbed a little bit on my lips in a hurry. I did not even spend 5 seconds on the mirror to check the color. I just grabbed the lipstick trying not to over think and finished my shopping for that day!

On my first application at home it appeared as neon pink-orange to me, which I did not like much. But, then I took a few selfies :) and was amazed to see how flattering it looks on me! I sent the photos to my sister and my Beautylish friends, they all assured that the color suits me perfectly! Their opinion helped me decide if I should return it. And one month later, I am really glad that I kept it. I have been wearing it every single chance I am getting. Considering its still Spring moving into the beautiful days of summer, this bright coral shade is just the PERFECT color to sport this season. I have medium olive/tan skin tone), I am pretty sure, it will look good on everyone.

Be ready!! :) I am going to rave about the product and this is going to be long post... 

First things first, I "LOVE" the unique packaging. Their choice of material as well as color for the packaging is very different and sleek. The outer packaging is made of typical light cardboard; the color combo of ash and red-orange on the outer packet gives it a very sophisticated look. The lipstick tube is in dark grey and minimalistic in design, but very sturdy. The material is very velvety, it kind of resembles the famous chic packaging of NARS. But I find it easier to maintain than the NARS ones (I don't like how NARS packaging keeps getting dirty after every use!). I also adore how "B" in the logo is little cut off. Weird me :) !! The "B" is also engraved in the actual lipstick, how cute!!

But a pretty packaging is not enough, right? The quality of the lipstick is unbelievable too!! For people like me who are "blessed" with naturally chapped lips; this is the exact formula that we need. It is very hydrating, extremely pigmented and really easy on the lips. Texture wise it is neither extremely matte nor shiny, but has a pleasant and very subtle creamy sheen! It's long wearing too. I have had a solid wear of 6 hrs before it started to fade off by a tiny bit. The other day I applied my makeup around 11 am and had to reapply my lipstick after a "full-on" Taco session at 4.30 pm. Apart from MAC matte lipsticks (which are VERY drying), no other lip products last that long on me. Another great thing is that when it starts to fade, it leaves a gorgeous and even stain behind which I really enjoy. Basically, if I want I can get away without reapplying another coat of lipstick. I can just slap on some lip balm and achieve a beautiful stain! :)

Bite Beauty is a natural lip care company based out of Toronto, Canada. Their packaging describes the lipstick as 95% natural. They use organic and natural food grade ingredients like resveratrol, organic fruit butter and manuka honey i.e. you can actually eat the products :) They also have a very innovative lip lab in New York City where they can manufacture the lipstick of your choice in under 20 minutes. You can literally walk up there with any discontinued or limited edition lipstick that you are running out of, and they will custom-make it in front of you...Isn't it super cool? You can read more about it here. I love learning and sharing tit-bits of information on cosmetics brands; hope you'd also enjoy them :)

It's definitely a pricey product! The Luminous Creme Lipstick from them retails at $24 for 0.15 oz (4.35 g) of product, exclusively in Sephora. I am not aware of any other place where you can buy it. If you happen to know, please share. Anyway, $24 is no doubt a lot of money to pay for a lipstick, but for the amazing feel on my lips and the high performance I am getting, I truly feel its worth every penny!! 

So yeah, that's it. I can actually go on and on abut how much I love it. Nonetheless...

  • Highly pigmented and extremely opaque!
  • Long wearing.
  • Very moisturizing
  • Sometimes, it tends to settle on the fine lines on my lips. It may sound a bit contradicting, but I see a thin layer of dead skin towards the end of the day, although my lips do not feel dry at all. Kind of weird!

I am yet to try other products from this brand, but I absolutely recommend their Luminous Creme Lipsticks, if you are in the market for a spring/summer color, I am pretty sure you will love "Cin Cin"!! I have been enjoying it and will surely be picking up some more of these in the future!

Hope it was helpful.


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Tarte: Balanced & Beautiful Amazonian Clay Essentials Kit

If you have been reading my beauty-related posts you already know how much I love Tarte Cosmetics! It is a wonderful natural brand. Their products are infused with superfruit, plant extracts, vitamins, minerals, essential oils and other naturally-derived ingredients and do not contain harmful elements like paraben, mineral oil, phthalate, sodium lauryl sulfate, triclosan, synthetic fragrances, gluten. You can read more about it here. I have always been intrigued about their 12-hr Amazonian Clay blushes that everyone raves about!! But let's be honest, $26 for a blush seems a bit pricey!

I saw this kit online during the last holiday season but I stayed away, the blush looked scary at that time :) Now, few months later, it showed up on sale at Ulta (at $19), plus I had a 20% off coupon; I will be a fool if I don't take advantage of that. Like I said the blush retails at $26, so you are getting two additional goodies at a much lesser price than that of the blush alone! Oh btw, the kit comes at a regular price of $22.

This set is encased in a hot pink cardboard-paper box with a striking gold ikat-print design which is very characteristic of Tarte. The outer packaging of the blush is plastic but sturdy, comes with a nice round mirror and opens entirely flat. Plus, the outside color is exactly like the blush which is always uber convenient. I also love the decorative "tarte" embossing on the lid as well as their typical design carved on the blush itself. Such a cute product to own :) The cream eyeshadow comes in a tiny adorable pot that seems to be very robust. The brush is made in China and has a long-enough 'bamboo' handle, which is always good for our earth :) Overall, I am really impressed with the packaging of all the products.

The kit contains the following products
  • Full-size (0.20 oz/5.6 g) Amazonian clay 12-hr blush in "FLUSH".
  • Full-size (0.1 oz/ 3.4 g) Amazonian clay waterproof cream eyeshadow in "SLATE".
  • Full-size bamboo cream eyeshadow brush.

FLUSH: These amazonian clay blushes are one of Tarte's wildly loved products. Now I know why! They are insanely pigmented and really really long wearing. I have had around 7-8 hours of solid wear out of them. I will not be able to confirm its durability claim for 12 hr as I have not wore them for that long. But it's definitely long wearing.

It's a vibrant pinkish berry shade which looks utterly scary on the pan, but transforms to a very natural color on the skin. I have medium olive skin tone and I just need the lightest swipe to get the color show up beautifully on my cheeks. Perfect color for fall & winter, if you happen to strictly follow seasonal-color rules :) I absolutely love the shade on me, but it will look even more gorgeous on dark-skinned girls. If you have lighter skin tone than me, you will need to be extremely careful not to put on a lot of product, but don't let that bother you. This will look beautiful on everyone. 

SLATE: I adore how cute and tiny this pot is. The color is a bit challenging to describe though. I see it as a beautiful mixture of rose-hued champagne and taupe with cream colored micro-mini shimmers. The color is almost invisible on my hand under broad daylight. On my lid, it transfers as this lovely champagne-beige color. It can be used as base and also as a single color all over the lid, which is my favorite way of using it. Easy, beautiful look in just one swipe. Sometimes, I put this in my inner corner too, which immediately brightens up the look.

Brush: It's a nice flat eyeshadow brush with some sturdy bristles. It is very useful in patting colors on the lid. I have used it in applying the cream shadow above, but I prefer using my ring finger instead. 

Three wonderful products at such an awesome value! With the sale price and coupon, this might be the best deal I have scored in a while (Giddy smile! :) ;) ) As you can already tell, I am totally in love with this kit. But still, here goes my customary pros and cons...

  • Excellent value for your money.
  • Gorgeous long wearing blush in a lovely color.
  • Beautiful waterproof cream shadow in a perfect "everyday" shade.
  • None :)

I have seen this kit mostly around the holiday season in Ulta, Tarte. You may even try Sephora, QVC etc. As told before, I bought mine a few months after the holiday season in Ulta. So if you are a bit curious about the kit (Believe me, its a nice one to have ;)), keep an eye on the sale section of Ulta, Tarte and grab it whenever it's available ;) Hope it was helpful.


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Chai with Pakora and a few drops of rain!!

It is Friday again and it is raining outside, possibly the most boring drizzle ever! Not the relentless downpour that I totally love and long for. And oh yes, it is cold. Just when the weather was warming up and I was thinking of folding up my winter coats and exciting hoodies into the deepest corner of my closet, the temperature drops down to 7 °C (i.e. 44 °F). You gotta love the Windy City!

Is there anything that I can do to fight the dampening spirit of this weather? Yes, you guessed it right! A heavenly cup of Adrak Chai with some very delightful crispy pakoras. My mom loves to call them pokori or fuloris and so do I :) This combo of evening snack often makes me nostalgic. Ask any Indian, you will find this to be among their top 10 favorite snacks of all time. Also, I will rather spend some lovely quiet time in my kitchen than to get out of my PJs, dress up and go out to have fun! 

Just like every other cult favorite food, every household in India has their own version of pakoras. My mom used to prepare it in less oil so it was more healthy, but that is not necessarily my preference. I like the little ones from roadside tea vendors; I vividly remember the yummy freshly-fried "10 for 1 Rs" pakoras, under the Ganeshguri over bridge a decade ago! Because of the questionable hygiene associated with street foods, it was kind of forbidden in my home. May be that's what made it so irresistible. It took me a few years (yes, few years, please don't laugh at me :) ) to get the consistency of the batter right to achieve the fluffiness and crunchiness that I was after!

Let's discuss the recipe

Ingredients: Besan (Gram Flour), Onion, Baking Soda, Green Chilies, Cilantro/Coriander, Salt, Cumin Powder, Red Chili Powder.

  • I prefer to use red onions for that extra sharp flavor they have. Chop them into very thin mid-sized pieces. I believe thin pieces are extremely important as they help in bringing additional crunchiness.
  • Chop the chilies into very small pieces.
  • Mix few spoons of besan with the onion and chili. For me, onions are definitely more pronounced in the batter than the besan :) 
  • Add water. I like the consistency to be thick but not as heavy as a paste. If the batter looks runny, it still needs some more besan
  • Add cumin powder, salt, red chili powder and a bit of baking soda. Baking soda helps in making it more soft and fluffy. Mix everything well.
  • Add the chopped coriander just before you are ready to fry. 
  • Heat oil in a pan (in medium heat). Another important tip here is to use a circular deep cooking pot commonly known as Karahi in Assam. You will need less oil than using a flat bottomed pan. 
  • Place a spoonful (or less) into the hot oil separately for each pakora. Depending on the size of your pan, you can add multiple pakoras per batch. I like them to be small in size so I always use an itty-bitty amount. Sometimes, I like to use my hand in place of spoon.
  • You may need to flip the pakoras once in between. When you feel they are fried and turns orange red/golden outside, they are done.
  • Placing them in a paper towel before serving helps in soaking up the extra oil. 
  • Make an excellent cup of আদা দিয়া চাহ (Ginger tea).
  • Sit in the balcony and savor the fresh bits of awesomeness! Or, invite some friends over, watch a crappy movie while sipping on your "Kadak chai" :)

Sometimes, when I feel the extra need of eating healthy, I bake the pakoras in the oven. I tweak my recipe and make the batter more thicker. Spray some oil on a aluminum foil on the baking tray, place a spoonful amount per pakora and bake around 380-400 °F. That is my version of "No oil pakora". It definitely lacks the delicious crispiness of a deep-fried one but sometimes we need to show a little respect to our resolution of staying healthy! 

I know, if you have the slightest love for food, you all already know how to make pakoras, Nonetheless, I had fun sharing my recipe with you all and I hope it was helpful :)


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Laura Geller Beauty : Love Me Dew Trio

Ever since I started to take advantage of the super accessible beauty stores here in USA (yes, I am talking about our beloved Ulta and Sephora :) ), I am always eager to to try out different cosmetics brands. Laura Geller Beauty is a cruelty free prestige cosmetics brand launched by its founder Laura Geller on QVC in the year 2002. I love and admire a brand that has a strong woman at its roots. You can read more about it here.

During the recent "21 Days of Beauty Steals Event" in Ulta, I got two kits from Laura Geller. I have been totally enjoying the few products that I have started using since then.

Today, let us discuss the "LOVE ME DEW TRIO" consisting of 3 moisturising lip crayons weighing 0.10 0z (2.9 g) each. Individual crayons retail for $16 in her website, as well as in Ulta. The price for this kit is $25 i.e. $8 per crayon, very very affordable for the quality you are getting. I also noticed that in their website, net weight for individual lip crayon is 0.06 oz (1.9 g), but the ones in this kit weigh 0.10 oz (2.9 g)! Almost 1 g more; isn't that is awesome? Plus, I got a free I-care Waterproof eyeliner with my purchase. More reason to be happy!

The set is housed in a very simple yet sophisticated light-weight cardboard packaging. The actual lip crayon tube is made of sleek black plastic with the lip color showing up at the bottom; that makes it very convenient. These can be twisted upwards; so there is no need of sharpening.

Laura has definitely named these lip crayons very accurately. They feel super hydrating when you first put them on and goes on very smooth. They are reasonably long wear too. They are infused in Vitamin E, and described to have a balm-like texture. I have worn them for at least 6 hrs, while continuing with all kinds of drinking, eating and talking activities. After some hours of wear, there is a drying feel, but it also leaves a very nice stain, meaning you may get away without much need of touch-up. I believe, the color and texture of these crayons will be BEST for women who work in office environments and favour bold shades. Very easy to put in your purse too.

On to the colors now! If you love bold vivid colors, you will definitely appreciate the entire set. I am a very big fan of bright lips, my olive medium skin tone also helps me in experimenting with different colors :)

Plum Freeze: This is the deepest shade in the kit. Its a very deep berry shade; ideal for fall and winter. I also found that this color is a tad bit drying than the others.

Cranberry Glaze: This is a deep blue-based red which makes my teeth look really white :) I totally love wearing red lipstick and this is definitely my favorite from the set.

Dragon Fruit Sorbet: I was really apprehensive about this shade at first. It is a very bright fuchsia color. I never thought I will be able to wear it. But surprisingly, this looks really flattering on my skin tone, it brightens up my entire look. Such a pretty pretty spring color!! I would definitely be wearing it a lot for the coming 3-4 months :)

If you are not afraid of vivid colors you can very easily wear these lip crayons no matter what your skin tone is.

Here are my quick takes

  • Very opaque, buttery in texture and very smooth in application.
  • Very very affordable value. 
  • Good range of colors.
  • Reasonably long-wearing.
  • They are very hydrating. But, if you have super dry parched lips, these may settle in the fine lines of your lips by the end of the day.
  • I roamed around in the sun for an entire day with this in my purse. The fuchsia color got a little deformed at the tip. So be careful :)

If you are interested, you can find the kit in Laura Geller website and in Ulta, it is currently a permanent part of their Laura Geller Beauty offering. I will be definitely repurchasing once I run out of it :) Hope it was helpful!


Monday, May 5, 2014

:::ধনিয়াৰ চাটনী (Coriander Chutney):::

This is going to be the simplest and shortest recipe I have posted till date :) This is definitely one of the most widely used and well-loved Indian chutney

For those who do not know what is chutney, it is a flavoured condiment, mostly spicy which can be paired up with almost anything to oomph up the taste of your food. 

We, Indians, have been pairing up coriander chutney with samosa, tandoori chicken, tandoori drumstick, paranthas or with a simple daal-rice meal :) It goes with almost anything.

Also, there are a lot of variations of this chutney. You can change up few ingredients and it will be different flavour of the same chutney. Today, I will be sharing the simplest of all the variations and a few pictures showing how I used it :)

Ingredients: Chopped coriander (one bunch, large stem may be removed), salt, green chillies, very few coves of garlic and same amount of ginger, a little bit of jeera (cumin) powder, few spoons of lemon juice depending on your taste.

1. Mix all the ingredients and grind it together till it appears smooth. That's it. You are all done :)

Also, you can refrigerate it in an airtight container and this will last you for at least 5-6 days. Simple, super easy to make and long-lasting, do we need anything more ?


:::Tandoori style oven-broiled Chicken Drumsticks:::

So, it was a Sunday and as always I did not have much excitement going on for me! And because I already had some chicken drumsticks in my refrigerator, I decided to prepare some tandoori drumsticks or should I just name it oven-broiled chicken drumsticks. :)

First and foremost, this, again is a borrowed recipe. I always thought tandoori anything is a very terrifying recipe. I did not believe that I have the courage and patience to actually prepare such a long recipe. But, thanks to one of my friends, I finally realized this is actually pretty simple if I can manage the patience. A hat tip to her :). Lets go to the recipe straightforward. 

Ingredients: Chicken drumsticks, curd (aka plain yogurt), salt, garlic, ginger, paste, green chillies (optional, but I love the fresh smell of it), red chili powder, lemon juice, tandoori masala.

Important Note: From my few experiments, I can assure that the key to the success to this recipe is marination. I have succumbed to the temptation and prepared this dish when I did not have sufficient time. I have to accept that it did not turn out good.
  1. Remove the skin from the drumsticks, make few deep slits. There are two rounds of marination involved. I used the following proportions for 8 pieces of drumsticks.
  2. For First Round, mix juice from one small lemon, salt to your taste, 2 tablespoons of both ginger and garlic paste, red chili powder. Put the chicken pieces and marinate well so that the salty flavour can penetrate deep into the slits. Keep it for 30-45 minutes. 
  3. For Second Round, mix few tablespoons (I put 4) of curd with almost half amount of tandoori masala. Put the chicken pieces from the first marinade to this paste. 
  4. Keep this marination for as long as you want. I kept it around 10 hrs. But, at least 3-4 hrs is needed. 
  5. Broil it at 450° F in a conventional oven. Keep checking and turning the sides of the chicken pieces from time to time. When you put your fork into the pieces, you can gauge if it's properly cooked or not. Once you get a feel that it is cooked, and outer crust is a bit crisp, it should be done. It generally needs around an hour.
  6. Serve it as a snack or as a side dish to your meal. If you want a quick and easy recipe  of coriander chutney to go with the tandoori drumsticks, please click here :)

I enjoyed my crisp and well done drumsticks. I hope you will too :) 


Friday, May 2, 2014

:::অমিতাৰ খাৰ (Papaya with Alkali):::

This is another staple from my kitchen. If you are an Assamese or if you have lived in Assam for a long long time, you must have experienced this culinary delight.

Well, as a matter of fact, we, Assamese people are commonly referred to as "খাৰ খোৱা অসমীয়া" (khar eating Assamese), which often has an underlying indication that we are a bit lazy in nature. That is definitely changing now. Nevertheless, we love our khars:)

In an ideal Assamese meal, we generally start off with khar. You can make a khar dish with different primary ingredient like papaya (Assamese synonym: Amita), spinach, black gram, night jasmine flower etc. In my home, papaya was most frequently used.

Amitar Khar (papaya with alkali) in an Assamese household will usually include fish head from larger fishes (typically Rohu). The succulent fatty and pulpy taste of the fried fish head amalgamates with the alkali and slightly sweeter flavour of the unripe papaya to create this mouth-watering taste that every Assamese loves :) And the crunchiness of that fried fish head!! Yummmmmmy!!! It is not always easy to find Rohu here, so I have had substituted fish head with regular fish pieces or smaller fishes like Mua fish or younger Catfish. You can even skip the fish altogether. It is still going to taste awesome. 

Traditionally, khar is made from burning or sun-drying a typical banana tree stem or banana peel. The ash produced thereafter is mixed with water! The water is what we call khar. Generally for one meal serving 4 people, you don't need more than 3-4 teaspoons. But, this is definitely not the easiest way to prepare khar, specially if you are living outside Assam. "Baking Soda" is the most easiest and widely used alternative. Taste wise, it performs exactly the same. 

So here it goes...
Ingredients: Mustard oil (highly recommended), Red Chili, Bay Leaves, Pas Furon (five spices mix) or Mustard Seeds, Salt, Unripe PapayaKhar or Baking Soda, Fish-head or other fish pieces, Turmeric Powder (for fish pieces), Green Chili (optional), Potato (optional)

Important Note:
  • Make sure to get an unripe papaya. Even a slight ripe papaya may make the taste undesirably sweet.
  • Keep in mind that there is no need of onion, garlic, ginger or any kind of spices. I have seen khar recipes with these ingredients, but I really prefer making mine with the minimal spices and ingredients.
  • Be extremely careful about the amount of soda you are putting. More amount is going to leave a bitter aftertaste.
  1. Peel off the papaya, scoop the seeds, slice it and chop into small thin pieces. This may take a generous amount of time, specially for a larger size papaya. But the thinner the pieces, the lesser is the cooking time.
  2. I like to marinate the fish head with salt and turmeric for few minutes. Fry in your choice of oil. Make sure it is well fried.
  3. Heat mustard oil in a pan. Add the mustard seed/pas furon, bay leaves and red chillies when the oil is properly heated. The seeds will start to splatter (So be careful ;))
  4. Add papaya and potato pieces. Stir occasionally.
  5. After few minutes add salt and the soda. For a rather big-size papaya, 1/2 spoon soda should be enough.
  6. You will see the papaya pieces dissolve almost immediately. Keep stirring occasionally.
  7. Once you feel that the papaya is almost cooked, add the fried fish head. I try to break it into smaller fragments. This helps in allowing the flavour of the fish melt into the papaya.
  8. Cook for some more time.
  9. Serve with rice.

This is one of my "all-time favourite food". I am pretty sure, if you are from the land of Assam, you already have attempted or will attempt this recipe at least once in your life. :) And if the whole concept of alkali as food is totally new to you and you decide to experiment; I would love to know more. Comment below :)


Thursday, May 1, 2014

IT Cosmetics Naturally PRETTY Vol. 1 Matte Luxe Transforming Eyeshadow Palette

First of all, how clever is that name? Every woman wants to be naturally pretty. At least, we all want to look pretty :)

This is my first ever product from IT Cosmetics which is a cruelty-free, prestige brand of cosmetics for face and body, founded by present CEO Jamie Kern in 2008. It is a relatively new product and have not yet been talked about a lot in the beauty community. I was itching to check it out ever since I heard about it. The name is really catchy :) Most of the eyeshadows I own are shimmery and I often found myself looking for matte crease colors to finish off my looks. I saw and swatched this palette in ULTA during their "21 days of Beauty, Spring 2014" event. The shadows are pigmented and felt so smooth and buttery in my hand! I admit I don't own a thousand and one eyeshadows but these colors are very very pretty and looked so unique to me. I was immediately sold!! But I did not buy it that day, as I already hoarded up a lot of stuff. I was just trying to be a good girl you know :) 

Few days later I received the 'Friends and Family - 25% off coupon' email from IT Cosmetics. They also offer free US shipping on orders of $25; obviously I could not resist the temptation. The regular price of the palette is $42. It contains 14 matte eyeshadows and a transforming pearl shade all of which gives a total of .092 oz (2.62 g) of products. For me, it is definitely worth the price. With the coupon, it costs me $31.50, such an awesome price! Basically, I am very happy that I succumbed to my makeup addiction.

In case you are wondering, that's me in the pictures with my makeup ;) 
The outer packaging is a pink cardboard. The actual palette is also made of cardboard packaging with a velvety pink-colored fabric. I like it; my only complaint is that it is not going to be easy to maintain. It has a magnetic covered-up closure, so it feels sturdy to me. You get a decent size mirror inside. The inner frame is made up of golden colored cardboard which makes the palette look luxe and elegant. I love it.

This is termed as Vol. 1, so there is a chance that they will come up with different editions. The color range is awesome. You get two light shades, few mid-tone colors and then some really darker shades. Needless to say, they are all matte in texture. I feel I have every single crease colors I may ever want! They also can be worn wet or dry. Jamie worked out with plastic surgeons to develop these anti-aging shadows infused with Peptides, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Acai, Green Tea, Silk and antioxidants! Qualitywise, they are very pigmented, smooth and extremely easy to apply as well as blend out. The dark colors have a tiny bit of fallout but nothing too crazy. They also have such awesome staying power; around 10 hrs of wear for me without any distinguishable fading. The other day I put on a smokey eye using Warmth, Midnight and Noir at around 11 am, since it was my day off, I continued with household chores without being careful about my makeup. I even took a 30-min nap wrapping myself in blanket :). The shadows did not budge, I could go out without any touch up needed. 

Let me try to describe the colors for you...
Sheer Joy: This cream color is the lightest among all. Definitely a great crease color for paler skin tones. Excellent brow bone color for me.
Soft Light: Another great crease and brow bone color. Appears as a very muted light brown/taupe color to me.
Warmth: This is a brighter brown; almost undetectable on my skin tone; perfect everyday crease color for me.
Soulful: Looks like a very well-balanced mix between brown and mauve. Extremely pretty.
Mocha: Pretty brown/taupe, however you see it ;)

Violet: Very true to its name :) Such a pretty pretty color. Definitely going to help me in finishing of a purple smokey look.
Midnight: Dark blue comes to my mind whenever I hear the word "Midnight". The color is exactly that. Definitely very useful in creating navy smokey eye looks.

Noir: Matte black. Very pigmented but it also has the most fall outs among all the colors.
Iconic: Very pretty dark purple. Pair it with a Violet for a very elegant look :)
Java: Classic brown.
All Heart: I love how IT cosmetics named these shadows, very crisp and beautiful. All Heart is a more pronounced mauve color.
Sunset: Such a lovely lovely shade. It shows up as a muted orange color, definitely resembles colors of sunset.  It is very hard to choose, but this might be my most favourite among all.
Sunrise: Hmmm, I don't know how to describe this color. A brighter orangy brown color but not too over the top.
Love: A lovely pale pink color, very apt for my brow bone.

Transforming pearl: This is the bigger color in the palette. This can be used on top of the any shades to transform it into shimmer. As in the picture, I don't see much of a difference. Plus the pearl makes the color less vibrant, not something that I enjoy. I love the palette so much that I really don't care about the pearl shade and its performance. I am still going to use it as an eyeshadow to brighten up my tear-duct.
Here are my quick takes:
  • This palette makes me happy, definitely a plus point for me :) :) :)
  • Shadows are velvety, buttery and pigmented. Very easy to blend out. I am very impressed by the quality of these shadows.
  • Awesome staying power.
  • Very impressive range of color.
  • Good value when compared to some other palettes.
  • The only con I could think of is the fallout. But, nothing too serious :)
If you are a matte eyeshadow fan, I recommend you getting this palette. You will definitely fall in love. Even if you don't LOVE mattes, this is a pretty palette to have. I realize, this has become quite a long post, but I have been really enjoying this palette so much. Hope it was helpful.

Last but not the least, I love the quote by Jamie, on the back of the packaging "You are naturally pretty, you are beautiful, you are one of a kind, you are it!". 


P.S.: As of now the palette is avaliable in ULTA ($42), and in QVC with a double ended brush ($39.56).