NYX SMLC Amsterdam + Black Eyeliner: A Lime Crime Wicked Dupe?

NYX Amsterdam mixed with varying degrees of Tarte Onyx black eyeliner
NYX Amsterdam mixed with varying degrees of Tarte Onyx black eyeliner

I did a quick swatch this morning of the NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream (SMLC) in Amsterdam with black eyeliner (I used Tarte Onyx). I just mixed them on the lips, layering the black eyeliner on top of the red color and blending with my finger, and repeating until I get the desired mix. I usually do this to tame down Amsterdam to the level of the middle swatch (picture above). But this morning I tried to take it to extremes and darkened it slightly beyond my comfort level (right most picture). A dupe with Lime Crime Wicked? You be the judge. Perhaps the result would be nice with NYX SMLC Monte Carlo, which I do no have anymore. NYX Marocco would also work (see swatches below).

Top to bottom: Tarte Onyx black eyeliner, NYX Marocco, NYX Amsterdam
Top to bottom: Tarte Onyx black eyeliner, NYX Marocco, NYX Amsterdam

NYX Amsterdam Marocco Tarte Onyx

 

 

 

Review and Swatches: Tarte Off the Cuff Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush Palette

Tarte Off the Cuff Amazonian Clay Blush Palette4

I love Tarte Amazonian Clay blushes. They are one of the longest-lasting blushes on me, and there’s just something in the ingredient that makes them melt into my skin. I have a couple of regular-sized ones and last year’s holiday set. Obviously when Tarte released its holiday Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush set, the Off the Cuff Palette, I did not not even think before I made the order.

The palette has landed and as expected, I love it! I don’t recall ever having a blush palette before, so it is somewhat a novelty. Plus ALL the colors are usable, there’s not a dud for me. I am glad they did not include a highlighter of sorts, which I very rarely use. And the bracelet/cuff, pictured above? Not half bad. Overall, this is probably my best value cosmetics buy this year.

Tarte Off the Cuff Amazonian Clay Blush Palette2

 

Tarte Off the Cuff Amazonian Clay Blush Palette5
Tarte Off the Cuff Palettte shades (l-r): crave, dazzled, darling, dollface, park avenue princess
Tarte Off the Cuff Amazonian Clay Blush Palette3
Tarte Off the Cuff Palettte swatches (l-r): crave, dazzled, darling, dollface, park avenue princess

Complete 18 shades swatched: L.A. Girl Pro Conceal high definition concealer

L.A Girl HD Pro Conceal high definition concealer complete swatch
L.A Girl HD Pro Conceal high definition concealer complete swatch of 18 shades (click to enlarge)

I don’t really use concealers to conceal; I haven’t got the patience for micro-concealing. A good foundation that evenly covers everything, and that would be a wrap for me, in terms of coverage. Sometimes I would do some under-eye dark circle concealment, but that’s once in a blue moon.

I do,  however, understand that concealers can be good stuff. I haven’t tried a lot of concealers, but the L.A. Girl Pro Conceal high definition concealer gets high raves online that it’s hard to give it a miss. I first tried it in ‘pure beige’, using it as a foundation. It was really good, though the shade is a bit dark for me, but the tone is right. I next tried ‘creamy beige’ and it’s such a good match as a foundation that I am keeping it in my personal arsenal.

What I like about this product: its price (cheap!); its creamy texture that blends well and gets along with other liquid makeup (foundation, tinted moisturizer, sunblock) so I can use it to tint, lighten or darken them; and it’s portable size. I can hardly think of a con except for its brush applicator tip, which will need to be cleaned once in a while.

My favorite way to apply the L.A. Girl Pro Conceal as foundation is to use the Beauty Blender sponge. You can build coverage from sheer to medium; I guess you can do full coverage but I think it will look a bit heavy as this product is thick. Applying with a brush also works if you thin this product first (with your facial serum, moisturizers or other creamy liquids), but if you’re aiming at getting full coverage, take care since the buffing may make your skin feel raw. I found that using my toners as a mixture with this product will not work, as this stuff is very creamy, and substances that are too watery can’t blend well with it. Ditto with spritzing my face first, which can lead to streaky results.

The L.A. Pro Conceal comes in 18 shades and it can be mind boggling to pick a shade. I can only find one complete set of swatches on the internet, so here’s an additional reference by yours truly. In the picture above, I swatched all 18 shades, and also included three of my foundations as comparison (Tarte Maracuja Miracle foundation in ‘light’, Guerlain Parure Gold Foundation in 02 ‘Beige Clair’, and MAC Studio Fix Fluid in ‘NC40’ which i use on other darker people). Note I am yellow-toned around MAC NC 25-30.

If you’re still not sure which shade to get, you can get a couple of colors, one light and one dark in the color family that you need, and mix them up as needed. Below a few results of mixing some of the shades.

L.A. Girl Pro Conceal high definition concealer mixed shades
L.A. Girl Pro Conceal high definition concealer mixed shades (50:50 ratio)
L.A. Girl Pro Conceal high definition concealer mixed shades
L.A. Girl Pro Conceal high definition concealer range of shades by mixing ‘beautiful bronze’ and ‘natural’ at various ratios

 

Review and Swatches: Tarte Maracuja Miracle Foundation

Tarte Maracuja Miracle Foundation and Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation
Tarte Maracuja Miracle Foundations and Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation

During Tarte’s last friends and family sale (30% off, yeah!), I bagged a few of their foundations. Two shades of the Tarte Maracuja Miracle Foundation 12-hour Broad Spectrum SPF 15 Sunscreen (in shades ‘light’ and ‘light medium’) and the Amazonian Clay 12-hour Full Coverage Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15 Sunscreen (in shade ‘light medium sand’).

Until my early 30’s, tinted moisturizers or very sheer foundations were enough for the coverage I needed. As I get older, my need for higher coverage and a great finish is much more pronounced, perhaps also because my skin is not as in great shape as in when I was younger. So I’m always tempted by great foundation reviews, and these Tarte ones have been getting those in good number. This review is for the Maracuja Miracle foundation. I will review the 12-hour Full Coverage Foundation later.

tarte maracuja foundation light5
Left to right: Tarte Maracuja Miracla in ‘light’ and ‘light medium’, Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation in ‘light medium sand’

First off, the shade ‘light’ is a very good match, as foundation goes. I have a very strong yellow tone, and it is hard to find a good match amongst international brands (local Indonesian brands, however, give me great matches). Note the difference in shade ‘light medium’ in the two types of these Tarte foundations, which are both too dark for me.

The finish of the Maracuja Miracle Foundation is sheer and slightly satin-y. In the picture below, the Foundation was applied atop serum and without primer and powder. I suppose you can add a few layers to get medium coverage.The lasting power is standard (starting to lose coverage and having to blot after about 4 hours), but I like the color match, having some sun protection, and that it applies nicely without a primer (hail silicones and beeswax galore!).

tarte maracuja foundation light2

Passiflora adulis seed oil (the so-called maracuja) is listed very, very low in the ingredients list. I doubt you are getting any significant amount of miracle, ha!

Maracuja Miracle Foundation list of ingredients
Maracuja Miracle Foundation list of ingredients