Avon Smooth Minerals Lipstick

Oh my gosh! It's already the 31st! Can you imagine that it will be next year tomorrow? I try to backtrack everything I've done on 2010, but it's too overwhelming. Suffice it to say that I immensely enjoyed this year, and it has made me grow so much in both the professional and personal departments.

As for Project Vanity, we have enjoyed modest success, closing the year with more than 500 entries and thousands of readers every month. This could not have been possible without you! :D

So, allow me to close the year with something this blog does best: a makeup review.

The Avon Smooth Minerals Lipstick (P375) is supposed to give "luminous, luxurious color", and it does! It's sheer upon first application, but I believe that it's designed to be buildable. Avon is not really known for their excursions in the shocking color department, which is just as well because every girl needs a beautiful lipstick that feels comfortable on the lips.

What I love about the product

  • Smooth, glides on easily.
  • Has a glossy, luminous finish. Really gives dimension to the lips and draws light to the face.
  • Non-waxy, light feel.
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L'Oreal Paris Base Magique Primer

Making makeup stay put in our hot and humid country is always a challenge. That's why primers are a must if you're always out wearing makeup for long periods of time! One of the newest primers out of the market is the L'Oreal Base Magique, also known as the Magic Perfecting Base in other countries. It claims to smoothen the skin and cover pores on top of helping your makeup last longer. 

 

L'Oreal recommends the Base Magique for oily skin, and I rather agree since this silicon-based primer is non-greasy and feels like nothing on my face - if applied correctly. 

What I love about the product

  • It's a good primer. It helps foundation and blushes stay on longer! I once used it in an all-day shopping event, and my makeup looked great at the end of the day. There was a bit of oiliness, but nothing major.
  • Helps makeup glide on, preventing patchy application.

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A gift from Avon

Unexpected packages are always a joy to receive. It's nice to know that someone is thinking of you out there, right? So imagine my glee when this package arrived on my doorstep just yesterday:

I know the message is generic, and Avon probably had their media agency send dozens of these out to the press, but I really appreciate that Avon remembered me and of course, Project Vanity!

Click after the jump to see what's inside!

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Myra e Daily Sun Protect Facial Moisturizer SPF 15

I think Myra is doing a great job on their current selection. Not only are the products very affordable and easily accessible, they actually work as they should! You'll remember that I really liked the Myra Vitaglow Tinted Moisturizer, the face powder, and even the lip balm. 

Now, I first used the Myra e Daily Sun Protect Facial Moisturizer SPF 15 almost half a year ago. I loved how it looked on me, as well as the non-greasy, very light feel on my face. Sadly I broke out so I had put it away. Just recently, I got around to trying it again, and I noticed that my skin doesn't react anymore. I've been using this pretty regularly since last week. I'm so happy that I finally found an SPF moisturizer that doesn't aggravate my skin!

What I love about the product

  • Feels light and non-greasy on the skin. It has a watery texture that's very comfortable. Great for oily-skinned gals out there!
  • Feels cool upon application. Relaxing.
  • Has SPF15. That number is enough to protect the skin from the sun for three hours.

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Shu Uemura Art of Travel Palette

I've been looking for reviews of the Shu Uemura Art of Travel Palette, but it appears that they are few and far between. From what I understand, this palette is travel-exclusive, meaning you can only find it in airport malls. I find that sad because this is a great palette that's not only convenient for traveling - it can also do sophisticated day-to-night looks with its high-quality eyeshadows and pretty Glow On blush.

What I love about the product

  • Four highly pigmented eyeshadows that I find well-picked in terms of color coordination and versatility. There are lots of ways to combine them for day and night looks.
  • The cream base is a huge surprise for me. On the pan, it looks like a boring white cream base, but it actually applies as a gorgeous golden shimmer! It reminds me of Bobbi Brown's glitter eyeshadows. The shimmer is very, very fine, and I prefer applying it on top of eyeshadows to give the eyes that extra "oomph".

 

  • The Glow On adds a pretty glow to my cheeks as promised. I've owned a Glow On previously, and I really love the effect on the cheeks. The blush doesn't have a name, but I guess it is very close to (if not the same thing as) the Shu Uemura Glow On in M Pink 33.
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Happy holidays

The reason I haven't been blogging is because I have been reading. A lot. I used to read dozens of book every month when I was younger, but all that changed when I started working. I've marathoned a few books, but always in spurts. Tis' the perfect season to devour books along with the tastiest food! Hehe. 

Cam

Yesterday, Christmas day, my dad, mom, and I visited Tagaytay. It seems as if we weren't the only ones who had that brilliant idea. It was traffic-fest as carloads of families poured into restaurants and tourist spots! It feels as if we spent most of our day trip there mucking in traffic. Still, it was fun, and I couldn't have thought of a better way to spend the day.

Now, what I'm really waiting for is New Year.

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The Project Vanity Top 10 Must-haves

It's Christmas tomorrow! For me, this is the time to re-evaluate the things I've done in the past year as well as the things I plan to do next year. It's also time to look back on the beauty/fashion items that I loved best. Here's my top ten last year. Curious about what made it this year?

Presenting, the Project Vanity Top 10 - the best in beauty and fashion that I've come across this year! Warning: excessive raving up ahead!

1. Clinique Moisture Surge

This baby does wonders for my skin. I've raved about it several times here! Definitely the best moisturizer I've come across.

2. NARS Sheer Glow Foundation

Feels and looks like second skin - only more perfect! I can NOT stop talking about this.

3. Levi's Curve ID Jeans

These jeans promise the perfect fit and it delivers. You will never have to buy another pair of jeans again once you wear these, I bet. ;)

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MAC Amplified Creme Lipstick in Blankety

MAC Blankety is the first ever MAC lipstick that I bought. I regret it. It's an okay color, but it's not something that I would rave about. I wished I got something reliable like Cosmo, famous like Pink Noveau, or classic like Russian Red. I don't know what got in my head!

Okay I do. I was looking for a shade in the nude color family since I only have a few nudes while I have quite a lot of pinks, reds, and everyday shades. I picked the Amplified Creme type because I read that it's smooth and creamy, unlike Satin (I owned MAC Twig, which I gave away to my mom) which I found too dry. Blankety is one of MAC's more famous nude lipsticks so I chose it.

Anyway, on to the review!

What I love about the product

  • Glides on smoothly and feels creamy on the lips
  • Good wear time at four hours, barring any eating
  • Opaque and pigmented
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A casual edge

I spent last Saturday with top beauty and fashion bloggers as they enjoyed a relaxing afternoon at Qiwellness spa. It was the launch of the Asian Secrets lulur body scrub that everyone's been raving about! I organized the event, so I'm extremely thankful to everyone who made it even though I knew they had a busy schedule - Alex, Lauren, Shen, Julia, Pax, Phoebe, Jane, and Kim

I will write a separate post about the event next week. For the meantime, I just wanted to share a picture that Pax took of my outfit that day:

Drowning Equilibriums: Who stole my Christmas?

Levi's Curve jeans/ thrifted chambray shirt and brown biker jacket/ Charles & Keith platform booties

I knew it was a casual get-together so I chose to wear jeans, a chambray shirt, and a jacket.

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Rave: Smooth-365 Clarity + Smoothing Peptide Serum

I've had the Smooth-365 Clarity + Smoothing Peptide Serum for...oh, a few months now. It was love at first use, so I don't have a good excuse why I didn't review it sooner. Well, I partly wanted to space out expensive vs cheap products as well as rave-worthy vs meh items. The Smooth 365 is both rave-worthy and quite expensive at P2,500 per tube.

So what does Smooth-365 do? It's designed to promote skin clarity and give your skin a velvety smooth texture. "Skin clarity" is a rather vague term - does it mean fading out blemishes, or brightening skin? - but I can vouch that the Smooth-365 does make my skin look brighter and generally a nicer version of itself. It also gives a velvety texture to the skin instantly upon application. Too good to be true? Yes. But it does work.

If you're skeptical, you can visit Makeupalley, where Smooth-365 has a high rating of 4.2 out of 5. Makeupalley is my favorite cosmetics review community and the ratings are always reliable. Anything above 4 and you know you've got a keeper.

What I love about the product

  • Makes my skin smooth and velvety immediately upon application. I'm not sure if they have testers in Watsons drugstore, but
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Color obsession

I've been looking for something lime green to join my closet for a week now. I wanted to mix it with white, brown, and black - just to break the monotony, you understand. I finally found a lime green shirt in one of my favorite ukays for only - wait for it - P30! What a steal.

It looked mustard yellow in the store, but in better lighting, it looks like a dark lime green to me.

I love the lime green, tan, and gold combination.

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Duty Free makeup haul

Yesterday I visited Duty Free with my parents. I was super excited about this trip, because as you know, MAC makeup is already available there! I read online that the price difference between the US MAC and the Duty Free is very small. For example, eyeshadows are $14.50 in the US, but they're only $15.50 here. Not bad.

I got three MAC eyeshadows (All That Glitters, Wedge, Amber Lights), a blush for contouring (Harmony), and a nude lippie called Blankety. The eyeshadows were at $15.50 (P685 at current conversion rates), blushes at $21.50 (P950), and lipsticks at $17 (P751).

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Clinique Supermoisture Makeup

I've said this once and I'll say it again: Clinique makes some of the best foundations out there. The brand has a foundation for your major skin concerns, and the lasting power + finish are always amazing. My top Clinique foundation favorites are the Perfect Real Compact Makeup and the Superfit Makeup because they give the most natural finish that actually looks like my skin. They're second only to my Holy Grail foundation, the NARS Sheer Glow.

Anyway, today I'll talk about another favorite, the Clinique Supermoisture Makeup. It's Clinique's version of the tinted moisturizer, but without the limitations that usually comes with TMs. Convenient moisturizers that provide coverage are everywhere now - some of them cleverly called BB creams - but the main problem with these is that the shade selection and coverage are very limited. Not so with the Clinique Supermoisture Makeup!

What I love about the product

  • I skip moisturizer when I use this! That's one step slashed from my makeup routine. You know I love the Clinique Moisture Surge, but sometimes I'm in a rush and I prefer to skip it.
  • Light to medium coverage. It covers redness and light blemishes.
  • Has a glowy, natural finish, as if I'm not wearing any makeup.
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Neutral Palette Battle Royale

Do you like seeing your makeup together? I do! I'm sure you understand how I feel if, like me, you enjoy collecting and using makeup. You get that tiny thrill inside when you know that you have nice stuff you can depend on. 

That's why I thought to feature a neutral palette face-off. It's limited to my small collection of neutral palettes, but I wanted to quickly share with you my capsule review of each palette for, well, posterity. I've been steadily using neutrals most of the time these past few months, and I guess I want to keep tabs on my constant beauty companions. Hope you find this feature useful!

Note: Most of the palettes featured here are sadly limited edition or not available locally.

Neutral palettes: Youngblood Artiste Palette (with two MAC eyeshadows attached), Estee Lauder Deluxe Eyeshadow Compact, Bobbi Brown Champagne Quartz Eye Quad, Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Quad in Natural Smokes, Wet n Wild Color Icon palette in Vanity

Let's start shall we?

 

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Weekend market wear

I blogged last Saturday that I was off to Mercato Centrale, posting along with it a crappy web cam photo of my Topshop t-shirt. Lol. Nona (the lone commenter) asked to see what my outfit looks like.

This is not it:

Topshop burnout tee/ SM belt and elephant necklace/ Folded & Hung shorts/ Ichigo pink flats (not shown)

I thought this outfit was cute, but I found it a bit dressy for a casual two-hour stroll to a weekend market. Because seriously most girls there are just in their jeans and t-shirts, with barely any makeup on. I would hate to be overdressed for something that's supposed to be chill.

So I wore this instead!

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Colorescience Lip Polish

The Colorescience Lip Polish is perhaps the most misleadingly named product I've ever come across. One can reasonably expect that something named "lip polish" will give gloss and shine, but that's not the case with this one from Colorescience. The finish is matte, and it's unlike any gloss - or lip product, for that matter - that I've tried.

Instead, I'd say that this is the best lip stain ever. It sticks like no one's business; at times I like to think of it as a semi-permanent lip tattoo. Okay now that's just a hyperbole, but I want to give you guys an idea of the level it performs.

The texture of the lip product itself is not waxy like lipstick, tacky like gloss, or watery/gel-like like your normal lip stain. Instead, it's oily. Yes, oily. That's what it will feel like on your lips when you apply it, but later on it will turn a bit sticky. 

The color on the tube looks like a dark berry red, but when applied, it's a very natural red-pink.

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Charles & Keith loafers

I got these shoes more than two weeks ago but I only remembered to post them now. Anyway! I love these shoes because they're super comfortable. I've been wearing them quite often lately since I'm mostly running errands these days. They're perfect with jeans and shorts for that carefree, preppy look. I'd say they're a nice masculine finishing touch to any outfit.

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Contest alert! Win THREE Qiwellness spa GCs

Everyone is rushing for Christmas by now, what with all the shopping, cooking, gift wrapping and parties. I know I'm stressed! So, I thought to have this little giveaway for all Project Vanity readers out there. I want you guys to relax and take a breather. I'm giving away three GCs from Qiwellness Spa that entitles the bearer to a 90-minute signature massage of his/her choice: Qitranquility, Qivitality, or Qireflexology.

You're getting not one, but THREE Qiwellness GCs. Since Christmas is a season for giving, I want you to give two other friends/family members a relaxing afternoon at the spa.

Here are the mechanics:

1. Like the Project Vanity Facebook page.

2. On your personal profile, paste this and tag the names of two friends: "I want to take @____ and @____ to Qiwellness spa for a free 90-minute massage. Visit this link for more details: http://www.projectvanity.com/projectvanity/2010/12/13/contest-alert-win-three-qiwellness-spa-gcs.html" 

This is what your Facebook entry should look like:

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Brandy Boots from Gold Dot

I just saw Kookie Buhain blog about these boots. Want so bad! Major shoe lust here! Whoever is handling Gold Dot is doing a fantastic job. I remember seeing Bestie tote a Gold Dot envelope bag once that also got me drooling.

Gold Dot - BRANDY BOOTS - Photo #2 of 10

I see them with socks, pleated skirts, loose shirts, polos - all in autumn colors. Now I know that the clogs trend has been rehashed to death, but I like this particular combination of laced boots and gold studs over a leather lining. These shoes have a tough look about them, but not so tough as to lose that element of femininity.  

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