Confessions of a Cosmetic Junkie

helping the economy one lipstick at a time

Preview: TheBalm Limited Edition Muppets Cast Your Shadow Palette August 25, 2011

I think by now, based on my blog entries, you would have guessed that I had a pretty happy, normal childhood. I played in the streets, scraped my knees and elbows, knew pretty much all of the famous Filipino street games like Tumbang preso, Patintero, shakto (not sure of the spelling), football with a filipino twist – instead of a rubber ball, we use those plastic balls that were made to look like basketball and were a huge pain when you actually get hit by it (dodge ball style).

I grew up forced to take afternoon naps (which I so miss and want to take every single day hahaha) and in the afternoon, I am glued to watching cartoons like Thunder Cats (which now have a completely gross meaning), Street frogs and Karate Cat. Mornings are spent watching Sesame Street and Saturday afternoons are my favorite because The Muppet Show and Fraggle Rock is up. A lot of kids nowadays are no longer familiar of the Muppet Show and Fraggle Rock.

For my generation, let me refresh your memory… For the younger generation, let me introduce you to these magical and very entertaining group of puppets.

FRAGGLE ROCK: They live in caves and are simply a crazy bunch of muppets that love to sing and dance and from time to time get into mischief.

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THE MUPPET SHOW: These are at channel 9 think around 5 or 6pm. It’s a show with different hilarious segments.

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My favorites are the Swedish Chef (i honestly don’t understand everything he says but he is so freakin’ hilarious)

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and the 2 grumpy men on the balcony

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Anyway, I love them. They never cease to remind me that I absolutely had a grand time as a kid. So I do read a lot of tweets and beauty blogs so imagine my excitement when I heard that one of my favorite make-up brands – theBalm (locally available at the Beauty Bar), is actually releasing a make-up palette to commemorate the Muppet Movie being released this year I think.

TheBalm is probably one of the brands that do not get that much attention but are actually releasing very good quality make-up. They are comparable if not better than Urban Decay and MAC on the texture of their shadows, blushes, powders and even lipsticks. Their shadows are very buttery and soft. The color pay-off is very amazing as well. I honestly can’t say anything bad about their products as they are really of good quality. So the next time you visit Beauty Bar, try taking notice of theBalm’s counter so you can see for yourself how great their products are.

Here is a pic tweeted by @cardellino:

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On theBalm site, its described as:

“The perfect cast with the perfect shadows! Our Limited Edition palette contains all of your favorite Muppets in one multi-use face palette. With 16 gorgeous shadows/liners, 2 lip/cheek stains, and 1 lip gloss you’ll be able to create your best looks. With colors such as “Wocka, Wocka” and “Great Gonzo”, you’ll feel the Muppet Frenzy with every look. Complete with mirror and dual-ended brush, this palette has everything you need to get you ready for your starring role.”

Its an awesome, creative palette. You get a ton of product and the packaging is absolutely adorable. The color choices are a good mix of neutrals with a few pops of color thrown in. Muppet + Make-up + TheBalm = Heaven for me. 😀 The palette costs $44.50.

Since it’s a limited edition palette – only 1000 sets will be manufactured. So I’m not quite sure if the muppets palette will actually reach our local beauty bar stores. 😦 I already resigned myself to the fact that I will not get my hands on that palette when I first saw the promo photos.


Thank God for twitter, yesterday, theBalm announced that it is opening 300 sets for pre-order by simply sending an email with your name and how many you plan to purchase (limiting 2 per household). So excited as I was, I immediately sent an email with a prayer that I am part of the first 300.

When I got home from work today, opened my email and there it was… the lovely email confirming that I got in the list (Hurray!!! woohoo!!! back flips several times over). The email gives me a one-time link and when I click on the link, I am led to theBalm page which enabled me to pre-order for the set:

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So I ordered up, paid (after which I semi regretted for ordering just 1 palette… should have ordered 2 so a friend could have gotten her hands on the palette too… got too excited and did not think… dang!)… and now I shall comfortably wait for its delivery by early October.

For those who are not able to pre-order, do not fret as theBalm announced that they are releasing the same palette colors and contents for the holidays and it would be called TheBalm & The Beautiful. 😉 I was after the Muppet theme and packaging, hence, the effort of really ordering and patiently waiting for the delivery. So if you’re interested in the color combinations, you can then wait for the holiday release in December – where Beauty Bar always seem to get a stock of.

So I will definitely review as soon as I receive this by early October. :):):)


Semi-Massive Online Haul: GetSophisticated Online store August 21, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — karminaaguilar @ 9:25 am
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Get Sophisticated Online store has been one of my go-to online shop for my cosmetic fix for brands not available locally (Urban Decay, NYX, Too-Faced Cosmetics, EOS etc.). She is very reliable, her prices are relatively reasonable if you consider international shipping, customs taxes etc. when you do purchase the items yourself, directly from the products site (also, like UD and Sephora, they do not accept internationally-issued credit cards).

I always have smooth transactions with Shirlina (owner of Get Sophisticated site) and she would patiently answer my questions on some products I am not so sure of in terms of colors etc. Delivery was prompt and I honestly never had problems dealing with her.

Sadly, she is going abroad to study so she is closing up shop (sniff…sniff). She had a closing out sale and of course, I took advantage of the items I wanted before but were a bit if-fy on the price.

I sent in my order/payment last Monday and I got confirmation the same day that my items would be shipped Tuesday and voila, got them last Thursday!!!

Here is my package:

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Here is how she packs my precious items:

(first layer – bubble wrap… just love popping these up after hehehe)

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(second layer – another layer of wrapping)

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Here’s what I bought:

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Awww… and here are the freebies (lots of them)!!!

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Review of the items on future posts (I know!!! I am delayed on my posts… been really busy at work and haven’t had enough time to write and crop pictures 😦 … It will be better when things wind down a bit at work)

I will miss you Shirlina! It was really great doing business with you… hopefully I’d still get to do business with you should I decide on selling make-up. Good luck!!!

As for me, I am honestly set with my current beauty stash. I promise not to buy (fingers crossed) anymore stuff until I finish reviewing everything I have on my list of beauty loot to review.

Let me know which of these babies you would want me to review first. 😉


Musings: Catalogue Shopping – Avon Haul August 14, 2011

Avon has been in the cosmetic industry for as long as I can remember. They were actually the company where I first knew about catalogue shopping. I would stay at my mom’s clothing shop when I was little and there would be avon catalogues lying around. I would painstakingly browse each page and actually focus on the “kid’s” make up pages which would simply be pretty lip balms in fruit flavors packaged in strawberry shortcake like cartoons that had matching body powders and colognes. The lip balms smelled of strawberries and they would actually give you a hint of color similar to what cherry chiclets would do to your lips when you swipe them on your lips before actually chewing on them (I was a very resourceful child – if I can’t have lip colors, I find ways on normal kids’ sweets that have too much food coloring on them i.e. cherry chiclets and lipps candy…hehehe).

Anyway, Avon’s make-up collection has evolved through the years and they are now actually coming up with good but relatively affordable make-up products. As I grew up, I would save up my allowance to get one or two pieces of make-up from the catalogue. As I started working, I admit, I somehow snubbed Avon for Maybelline, L’Oreal, and Clinique… not because I thought these brands were better but more because I found these brands easier to purchase at the malls as opposed to Avon where I need to order it from an Avon agent and wait for the delivery… key word there is… wait. I’ve always been impatient and I hated waiting.

So lately, I’ve come across the newest avon catalogue from my mom’s friend and thought of hauling a few stuff… to see if they are worth the proverbial waiting time. They are still reasonably priced (Whole haul cost me Php726 ~ $17 for 4 items).

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I got the following (Detailed review on future post):

1) Dual ended eyeshadow + eye liner in Sunbeach sunshine : Php 199

2) Ultra Moisture-rich Mini Lipstick berry collection in Blushing Berry : Php 129

3) Ultra Moisture-rich Lipstick in Sheer Spice : Php 199

4) Ultra Moisture-rich Lipstick in Barely There : Php 199

Initial Swatches:

L-R Blushing Berry, Sheer Spice, Barely There and Eyeshadow/liner in Sunbeach sunshine

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Initial thoughts:

1) I think Avon products are hit or miss. In one collection, the texture of one product may be different from the other color (as with my experience on the Ultra Moisture Lipsticks that I got) although I was aware of the differences in terms of finish, still, I expected the texture to be somewhat similar if not consistent.

2) Ordering from a catalogue is a big risk in terms of the actual product you would be getting. The colors on the catalogue may look very lovely however, actual products may differ in a big way which is also the case with this order. Also, you would not be able to test the product itself to sample on yourself. This is the big advantage of buying from a counter where you are able to test the product and decide wether or not the product suits you before actually letting go of your money at the counter.

3) I still prefer buying my products from the cosmetic counters or shops. I was only happy with half of what I bought and I actually might give away the products that simply did not work for me (I still believe these may look better with other girls and maybe they just did not work for me)

Tips for Catalogue Shopping:

1) Search, search, and search – Use the internet. Ask friends. Search for reviews and swatches. If you read anything negative about it, search for other reviews. Do not be biased with one negative feedback if there are probably 5 more which says the product is acceptable.

2) Weed out – You have the tendency to overspend on catalogues because honestly, the pictures are just too inviting! and usually, catalogues have the promos which encourage you to buy more! Again, weed out!!! Pick out the color that you like the most and not end up getting all the colors available. 🙂

3) If, in spite of searching, you wanted to take a risk on a product, choose just 1 color to try. If you like it, then get the other colors the next time you buy, if not, then you only wasted your money on 1 product. 🙂

4) Enjoy… Have fun shopping.


Review: Wet N’ Wild Color Icon Trio Palettes August 8, 2011

“The beauty of a woman is seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.” – Audrey Hepburn

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I am a big fan of Audrey Hepburn. She embraced her fame with a humble heart and simplistic view of life in general. She did not let her fame get to her head and instead, lived the rest of her life being a Unicef goodwill ambassador. Her beauty is timeless and her eyes, are probably her most memorable feature. Her eyes actually inspired me to really play with colors and experiment more on what I can possibly do to change how my eyes look with just a play with color and different make-up products.

The eyes, for me, is the area in your face where you can be most artistic in. You can play with colors, control the shape of your eyes (make it bigger or smaller), make it look brighter, dramatic etc. You have unlimited possibilities in terms of what you can do and what colors to combine to achieve the perfect eye make-up for almost any occasion.

MAC, Urban Decay, and Too Faced are my personal favorites given their awesome pigmentation, varied finishes (mattes, shimmer, metallics to name a few), their buttery and very blend able consistency. However, they fall under the high-end mark in terms of price and availability (except for MAC which is available in a lot of malls) is quite limited here in Manila. You have to gamble on reliable online sellers to actually get your hands on UD and TF.

I discovered a new favorite. Something that can actually compete with the brands I mentioned above with a much much lower price tag. It competes in terms of pigmentation, consistency and blend ability (for the colors I chose at least… so you still have to swatch on the store in case you want other colors). I now introduce you to the… Wet N’ Wild Color Icon Trio Eye Palette! 🙂 I initially got myself 2 palettes: “I Got Good Jeans” and “Walking on Eggshells”.

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What are they? They are 3-color palettes whose colors are supposed to coordinate with each other. The colors are actually labelled for their purpose – eyelid, crease, brow bone. But don’t let the label stop you from actually using it for other eye areas. For the make-up newbies, these labels are very useful and turn the palette over, and lift the sticker label, you would see detailed instructions on how and where to apply the colors. Neat huh? 😀

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I liked how sleek and compact the packaging is. No frills, no drama. simple. On the package, it has 1 tiny brush (completely useless though lol!!!) and a sponge-tip applicator. Then you have the 3 eye shadows.

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These shadows are definitely cheap @ Php 299/palette ~ about $7. (They also have a 6-color palette with 3 matte shades and 3 shimmer shades @ Php 499) They definitely cost only a fraction of what you would spend for a single shadow from MAC, UD or TF. You can definitely play with the colors and get different palettes at this price. So if you are not brand conscious or have any bias against cheap make-up (but definitely good quality) this could fit your collection very nicely and not break your wallet indeed.

In terms of staying power, since I use the Urban Decay Primer Potion or commonly mentioned as UDPP* (another review altogether), these lovely colors lasted me the whole day without fading or creasing. This is a big plus for me because I have oily lids and eyeshadows usually crease and fade on my lids if I don’t use an eye shadow primer. Without an eyeshadow primer, they tend to fade and crease a bit on me on the 4th hour or so… on dry lids, it would probably last longer.

In terms of pigmentation and texture, these would not disappoint you as they are very pigmented and have a silky, buttery texture into them which makes blending of colors a treat. 🙂 The palettes I got were:

1) I Got Good Jeans – colors are light sky blue with silver shimmer, bright shimmery gold and metallic navy blue

2) Walking on Eggshells – colors are creamy vanilla with hints of white shimmer, chocolate brown with bronze shimmer, shimmery taupe-ey flesh


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I Got Good Jeans

  • “brow bone” = MAC Moon Reflection (WnW is slightly lighter in shade)
  • “crease” = MAC Deep Truth
  • “eyelid” = MAC Goldmine
  • Walking on Eggshells

  • “browbone” = MAC Shroom; UD Virgin
  • “crease” = MAC Cork; UD Buck
  • “eyelid” = MAC Naked Lunch; UD Sin
  • PROS: Good pigmentation, texture, quality and blendability; Varied color choices – from nudes to loud colors; available in most beauty sections of SM and selected Watson’s branches; slim, compact and simple packaging; good dupes for pricey brands; very reasonable price.

    CONS: cheap, useless brush (I think 2 sponge applicators would have been better); given their reasonable price, sometimes its hard to control the urge not to get everything from the collection hehehe.

    I think Wet n’ Wild did a very good job in revamping their collection. It looks more stylish now and the quality is actually very good. Their color names are quite catchy and cute too. These are a true gem specially for those just starting with make up or are make-up addicts on a budget or otherwise practical and would like to build their collection slowly but surely. With a bit of research and swatching, you may find more dupes of high-end shadows at a fraction of the cost. I am very happy with my purchases and would most likely get more in the future 😉

    * If you don’t have UDPP, a very good and cheaper alternative is the Palladio Herbal Eyeshadow Primer which is available at Beauty Bar for about Php 300-ish. 😉


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