Sunday, April 26, 2015

Formula X for Sephora The Twenty Two ::: Review and Swatches!!!

You may already know that I am a big advocate of value sets and when Sephora dropped the price from original cost of $55 to $22, I knew I had to get it. (Please keep in mind I started this post long back in Fall, '14). Its a total of 22 mini (0.16 fl oz each) Sephora FormulaX nails. So there are a lot of colors to play around and after using it for 8-9 months now, I can confidently say that my $22 was well spent. The color range and finish type are versatile and I like that they are mini size. I have never finished a full size nail polish, have you? :-) On average, the performance was good. Apart from a very few, they were pigmented and easy to apply. They lasted 3-4 days on an average without chipping. A few of them have better staying power though!!

Colors: 6 of the polishes are described as 'color' which I assume are the normal finish for nail polishes. I love each one of these. The pastels are perfect for Spring and I wear the bright colors irrespective of the season. I find this group to perform consistently. All of them are pigmented, easy to apply without any streaks and have good staying power.

Glitters: There are 4 glitters, apart from one, the rest are same design but with different base. I wish they would have included different shapes of speckles into different shades; that would have been fun. Nonetheless, I like them! Its hard for me not to incorporate at least one of these whenever I paint my nails.

Mettalic: Back in the days, when I was not much interested in makeup and hardly had one or two nail polishes in my vanity, these were the type of colors I always picked. Love each one of these!

Neons: I think this group disappointed me. Look at the colors; so vibrant, so fresh and full-of-life but they are not at all pigmented. The energy and the colors in the the bottle do not seem to transform well to the nails; not at all! With the green and the yellow I need coats and coats to make it look neon-y! The purple however does not show up they way I would have wanted even after many coats.

Bionic: It's a neon yellow and black different sizes of confetti on a clear base.
Meteroic: This one has really tiny colorful speckles with same kind of confetti in black and white.
Wham: Pure white with tiny strand and different sizes of confetti in white on a clear base.
Turbulent: Same as Meteroic, but nice sky blue in place of green. I think I love this one the most.
White Matter: Simple opaque white :-)
Dark Matter: Simple black and very clever and crisp nomenclature I must say.

Flashy: Bright true warm red. I can see an orange warm undertone to it. Its a very bold color.
Indelible: I love this shade of mid-tone purple. A very appropriate "Spring" shade. It goes on very smooth too!
Eureka: Very bright fuchsia color. I never liked pink girl-y colors before, but I am slowly becoming a fan. Equally nice for fingers and toes.
Omny: Very bright "true blue" color. Love it. Does not suit my tan hands that much but I still adore it.
Extraordinary: This is one of the nude shades. Very pastel-y kind of light grey shade. Love it. It will be perfect if your work in a very formal environment.
Unmistakable: Very pastel-y sea-foam green color. Goes on very very smooth.
Brazen: Baby pink color, goes on smooth and opaque. But it is too "barbie" for me, my hands ends up looking much more tan than it actually is.
Infatuated: This one and "Unmistakable" look a bit similar. But this one is true "baby blue" color. Very pastel-y and spring-y.
Thrilling: I love this color. Its not always easy to find a "true nude" nail polish for tan skin tone. I think this is the best I could find till now. Smooth as well.
Radioactive: Neon Lime Green. It's very thin in terms of consistency. I love the color during winter. But pigment-wise, I am very disappoint in it.
Haphazard: Very deep vibrant shade of purple. I had high hopes for this shade, but this is actually very sheer. I need at least 3-4 coats for the color to show up even and opaque. Most disappointing!!
Zap: Another non-performing in the bunch. It's neon yellow. I have heard that this color is very hard to manufacture. 
Vroom: This is my kind of color. :-) It's a taupe bronzy kind of color which makes my hand look very pretty. LOVE it.
Rocket Fuel: It looks like a duo chrome. I can see silver and pale emerald color. I have grown a fondness very this.
Racy: This might be my most favorite color. Its a light purple and metallic; right up my alley! :-) And it goes very smooth, among the metallic colors, this is the most hassle-free to use.
Need for Speed: Its a silver-y rosy gold color. But it looks a little more silver-y on my nails. Also very streaky when applied. It did not impressed me at all.

Like I said, the kit was released in early summer of last year. I know I am unforgivably late in reviewing it, but better late than never right? I am not sure if it is still available but if they release it again, and if you want to build up your nail inventory than this might be a good option. And if they offer sale price, than I would say go for it. :-) Plus, a lot of these colors are in their permanent line. Overall, FormulaX nail polishes are really nice :-)


Tuesday, April 14, 2015


Supporting because the issue is important and is close to my heart. Growing up in a controlled orthodox type of environment, discussion about anything that involves "sex" was and may still be "taboo"! But, it is high time that we, as a society accept that sexual violence is a "Human Issue" and we need to be aware about it.

I am especially concerned about the safety of our child; the younger generation. By the time, they become victims of sexual violence or abuse; they might not be able to able to realize what exactly is happening. We need to educate them. If you are a parent be alert, be aware of whom you children mingle with! If you are a big sister or brother, be vigilant! Sexual abuse at an early age may have very detrimental effect on young minds. It is especially difficult to be vocal about sexual violence in our society. But I truly believe it is now all the more important to stop treating this as a taboo...and stop victim-blaming!

Read more about it here

Sunday, April 5, 2015

In love with "Caudalie Favorites Kit: 2014"

All of my latest reviews have been mostly skincare! I have not been playing with makeup a lot recently ;-) If you have spent a little time “Discovering Me”, you know that I am a huge fan of value kits; both in makeup and skincare! But I still have to agree that there is a 80% chance that one or more products from these sets may not appeal to me. This set however has pleasantly surprised me!  I have been hearing a lot about Caudalie Skincare and when I saw this set in Sephora for $32 with 5 decent size products, sometime last year, I thought it will be an excellent opportunity to test the brand.

The set contains:
- 1 oz. Beauty Elixir 
- 0.33 oz. Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet 
- 1 oz. Hand and Nail Cream 
- 0.15 oz. Lip Conditioner 
- 1.69 oz. Make Up Remover Cleansing Water 
- Travel case

As you can see, the products are travel-friendly which is what I exactly need. It makes my life so much easier :-)

Lip Conditioner: I can happily say that this is the BEST lip balm that I have ever tried till now. It is a wonderful balm. Velvetty smooth to apply and keeps my lips moisturized for hours, even during the harsh Chicago weather! I also love the smell. Very light fragrance which I can’t exactly pinpoint what it is!
It got finished way too soon though, in just two months or may be less than that! My other trusted lip-balm from Nivea lasts me far more than that. The regular size lip conditioner retails at 12$; quite costly for a lip balm. For these two reasons, I probably would not buy a full size product at regular price. :-) But, but if I can score a value kit with this in it, I will be all over it. ;-) I really LOVE this.

Beauty Elixir: This is a product from Caudalie that is so well loved in the beauty community. And it should be!  It has a strong but very refreshing smell. I really LOVE the smell. I generally apply it right after shower and before I use my moisturizer. I don’t use it on an everyday basis though, it is a costly product and I don’t want to get addicted to it :-) This bottle costs 18$ separately and I believe I would be ok spending that much. It makes me feel very fancy… and sometimes we deserve to feel fancy. :-)
I also love the packaging, it’s very slim and stylish….I have finished the product but I am not yet ready to throw away the bottle; it’s so pretty!! :-) The spritzer is also very nice as in it sprays the product evenly.

Hand and Nail Cream: This is definitely another favorite from the set. My nails are not generally very fragile. In the event of continuous nail-polish wear, I use this cream and it heals my slightly yellow-ish nails :-) It’s moisturizing too as hand cream. I apply it before going to bed at night, it feels so luxurious! I am in love with the smell. It’s very citrusy, very fresh (I think I should take a crash course on understanding and describing fragrance note :-)) I have never fallen in love with a cosmetic fragrance as I have with this. :-)

Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet: It was a tiny tube and I finished it in 3 to 4 weeks. It is a light moisturizer with a very nice fragrance, the texture looks a little bit gritty but it’s a smooth moisturizer. It’s very weightless on the skin. It absorbs quickly and is good under makeup too. I have not been wearing a ton makeup these few days, but it did perform well for the days I did wear makeup. It performed extremely well in the hot humid Florida as I have been living here for work last few weeks; it might not be thick enough for cold drying climate. After I finish up the all the moisturizer I have been hoarding, I might be picking up the full size version of it.

Makeup Remover Cleansing Water: Like all the other products in the set this one also had a very mild fragrance. It is however a very simple and light makeup remover; certainly not for heavy duty makeup. This is the only product that I have not been using much, rest of the product I have already finished already. I don’t have a lot of complaints, but performance wise this is the only product in the bunch that I would have liked to perform better.

As I have already mentioned, I already have finished three of these products. I loved the kit so much that I went on a mission to get a backup. It was sold out in Sephora; so I bought the second set from Caudalie USA website. I got a free lip conditioner as this was my first purchase from them. I really want to appreciate Meagan from Caudalie Customer Care. She and other members of their online team were very helpful and communicative during my purchase (there were a few problems, and they really helped me out). Good customer care is something I always look for when I am trying out a new skincare brand. I love the story behind the brand too; you can read more about it here. I have become a fan of the brand and I would definitely be experimenting more. Do you have any suggestions?

Also, this is a limited-edition set that was curated for 2014. But it might still be available in Caudalie USA website. Also, right now Sephora has Caudalie favorite set for 2015 which almost has the same product except for the Gentle Cleansing Milk. I say pick it up, you will not regret it :-)