Part of my gripe before about local lip brands was that they seem to be averse to nudes — pink-nudes, mauve-nudes, peach-nudes, beige-nudes, brown-nudes and so on. There were a few by two (or 3) brands but not much variety. If you wanted a red or pink however you can take your pick amongst the sea of cherry-reds and orange-reds. Now we have BYS, Essence, Wet N Wild and Pinkies Collection for some much needed competition in the local nude lippie scene.

Pinkies Collections is the urbane girl’s favorite cosmetic. With chic and long-lasting makeup lines, Pinkies meets your delightful expectations. - Pinkies Collection Facebook

Ingredients: Squalane, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Tridecyl Trimellitate, Jojoba Oil, Shea Butter, Candelilla Cera, Cera Microcristallina, Beeswax, Tocopheryl Linoleate, Nylon-12, Propylparaben. [+/- (May contain): Titanium Dioxide, CI 77891, Iron Oxides CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499, Red 7 Lake CI 15850, Red 22 Lake CI 45380, Carmine CI 75470, Red 27 Lake CI 45410, Blue 1 Lake CI 42090, Yellow 6 Lake CI 15985, Yellow 5 Lake CI 19140

I bought two nude lipsticks from their Matte Collection —Bark and Callalily, they were only ones that suited me best out the four "nude" shades and I figured they were something I could wear a lot. I also swatched their lip pencils and while I didn't necessarily like the texture, I still got Atlantic just to check out the colour on my lips —the chocolate brown looked interesting.

I think that the packaging of these lipsticks is cute, with its sturdy solid plastic light -pink tube, but it is a little bulky and a little excessive on the plastic compared to the actual lipstick inside. In the image above, the two lipsticks look similar, but that's not the case when you swatch them.

The Smooth Silk Lip Pencils are actually marketed as Eye & Lip pencils, possibly because of the other colours in the line ( I saw a purple and blue). The pencil itself is really long for Php 99.  And I think that's pretty cheap.

The colours are very pigmented as you can see. The Matte lipsticks are a true-matte formula meaning they can look dry and can emphasize dry patches especially pale beige-pinky-nude Callalily. It sits well but prepping the lips is still a must. The lipsticks can also feel dry or drying when you're staying in an air-conditioned room and you have to talk a lot (me). Texture-wise, they're creamy but can drag a little on the lips because it's legit matte. Not a deal-breaker for me as I love the colours (Bark, my favorite, is a nice dusky-rosey-mauve), the finish and the longevity.

Although in the swatches, Bark registers more pink it's definitely more muted and mauvey on your lips in real life.

Atlantic is super soft (to the point of breakage if you're not careful) and glides on the lips. The finish gives a little bit of shine. I wouldn't really use this as a lip pencil because I know it will bleed outside the lip-line given how slippery it is. I also wouldn't use this on the eyes. It works very well mixed-in with both lipsticks, giving me more options to how I want to wear Bark and Callalily. Because to be honest, Callalily washes me the F out. It's a little too light unless I wear dark/statement eye makeup or I blot off most of it.

As for the colour of the lip pencil (Atlantic), it's definitely something out of a 90's beauty magazine. It's like a mocha with a hint of gray. I know the lip swatches look warmer but it definitely has some gray to it.

Me giving face.

I'm still adjusting to my digicam which explains the weird lighting of the photos above. Please refer to the other photos for a better idea of the colours.

For Php 198 / 189 (they were cheaper before :( ) you get a really good pigmented true-matte lippie and for Php 89-99 a smooth, creamy and pigmented lip pencil/lip colour. These are pretty damn affordable in my opinion.

Have you tried this?  Would you try it? What do you think of the colours?


PS. I broke my good camera and now I'm using a digi cam so the colour settings can get challenging when I take a picture of my face. :( The hand swatches and others are easier to manipulate/correct.
PPS. I first mentioned the matte lippies here.

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No flower crowns, hippie headbands and Doc Martens here (I love Doc Martens though).

Music festivals are where fashion-rule-breakers come out to play. Where else can you expect to wear something outrageous and not get judging stares? Feather boa + boots? Go for it!

For the past few music festivals there have been onslaughts of flower crowns, daisy dukes, feathers and flash tattoos. Not that they're ugly or bad (I like daisy dukes and flower crowns myself), maybe it's the rebel in me, but they can get boring and uninteresting especially if every other person's wearing them.

A great way to keep the hair out of the face and keep your scalp from frying under the blaring hot sun is by using a scarf/turban or bandana. The flowy shift dress and gladiator sandals all tie-in with the rest of the accessories.

Can we just take a moment to appreciate the prints, retro shades and bright lippie combo here? Love the clogs/mary-janes too.

 A shift cotton dress is a welcome alternative to the shorts + tee combo. Easy to put on. Easy to take off. The fringe bag and the cowboy hat take center stage to this beautiful blank canvas,
The black mid-riff off shoulder and whitewash almost white jean shorts. The black booties. The choker. The shades. That cute kitty purse. THE FRINGE! This outfit is definitely frolick-appropriate. Your feet won't hate you at the end of the day and you can run-around and dance without worrying. I'd tie my hair up though because it is unbelievable hot and humid here right now in the Philippines.
Again reminiscent the this whole look including the hair is very 70's vibe. Blue and brown can do no wrong.
The peasant lace blouse is reminiscent of the ye olden times as well as the 70's with the button-fly denim shorts and "fanny-pack" but adding the milkmaid braids and very stylish mirror shades keeps it grounded in this century.

This is everything. The hair. The colour-block. The two-piece. The "Hawaiian" print. The shoes. The sunnies. On point ladies. On point.

My personal style is echoed here and if you can guess all of them feature cotton or lightweight fabrics in easy to move/dance around cuts/styles. I mean it is a music festival, you're expected to at least dance a few times. And as most music festivals are won't to do, you're going to probably be outside in the blaring heat all the way to night so comfort is key.

But like I said comfort is key, so feel free to rock a tank/tee and jeans. I mean after all you're there to enjoy good music (and good company) which you don't necessarily have to dress up for (if you look cute while doing it, that's always a plus. No judgement here) :)


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There are a slew of brow products out there and it can get confusing especially to a complete beginner. The pencil, a majority favorite especially in the Philippines have other fast-growing competitors now. Namely, the brow gel/mascaras and brow powders.

There are a few more types out there but let's just stick with these three. And these three can be found under drugstore-darling, Maybelline.

The Pencil : Master Brow (Php 249)

A twist-up slim brow pencil with an ultra-soft finish. Features a 2-in-1 oval head which allows for easy application. Lasts for 24 hours. Comes in Brown and Gray.

The pencil is retractable as do all most Maybelline brow pencils. The lid snaps shut and won't have the tendency to accidentally open inside your bag. [same with the other pencil featured in this post] The twist-up is a little loose though. I have this pencil in gray, and while I think the colour is passable with my black hair I really hate this pencil. Harsh verdict yes, but let me elaborate.

The pencil is a little soft and has a tendency to break if you're heavy-handed. Because of the texture and the slimness, I have snapped off at least 2 - 3 mm of said pencil while using it. The lead is a little waxy for my taste. It clings and tugs at my brows as I use it so I always see brow hairs at the tip of the pencil *boo*. Another problem I have with it is that it applies "crumbly" and patchy. Like it balls up as I apply it (naglilibag) and it drags a little. It's not the smoothest pencil out there.

By the time I brush it out, since it clings more to the hair, I find bald spots where the pencil didn't stick to the skin. If I fill those spots in however, the brows looks too strong and by this point I could very well be casted as the next Live Action version of Rock Lee .

One redeeming factor about this pencil is that it's hard to smudge. You really have to rub hard to get it to come off without oil and/or soap and water. Waxy pencils like this are used more if you want to lay down your brow hairs and keep them in place.maybelline-brow-pencil-duo-shaper-master-brow-3d-contouring-palette-mascara-review-guide-3
The Pencil + Powder : Fashion Brow Duo Shaper / Brow Satin Brows (US/Europe) (Php 299)

For naturally defined and softer, fuller brows. Features a 2mm slim pencil and a similar coloured silicone powder at the other end. Comes in Light Brown and Brown.

It's pretty decent. I have this in light brown and it's a yellow-golden-brown colour. Not at all orange or reddish on the skin. I think it's perfect for blondes or light haired people. Reminiscent of Glam21's Skinny Brow Pencil, the "lead" product is tiny and glides on better than the Master Brow. It's still a bit waxy for my taste but it's not patchy and doesn't "ball-up". (still pulls out my hair though :( )

The brow powder on the other end has a sponge-tip applicator similar to an eyeliner smudger. It's soft and dispenses powder well enough. You dip it in the cap where the powder is located and tap it in a few times. To some people it may get a little tedious to tap it in the cap to get more product for each brow, but it's not a big deal for me.

The finish and effect of this pencil duo is a more natural brow. Especially since I have it in a lighter shade. Apart from the obvious blonde-ish brow, you can't tell I have something on them. It's easy to draw "brow hairs" with the pencil tip and the powder helps set it in place.

How to Use : You can either use pencil or powder first whichever you prefer. Define and fill-in the brows with the pencil end then use the powder to set it OR tap the powder on the inner part of the brow then fill-in and define the rest. The powder is on the cap of the powder-sponge end
The Powder : Fashion Brow 3D Contouring Palette / Brow Drama Pro Palette (US) / Master Brow Pro Palette (EU) (Php 299)

 An all-in-one nose & brow palette, complete with a double ended brush. It features two brow powders and one wax.

Marketed as a brow powder and nose contour in one palette, this multi-tasker is something I would pick over the two mentioned pencils. If only for the fact that I have more uses (hello matte shadows!) with this plus I don't pull out my own brow hairs.

The packaging is plasticky and the lid shuts tight. Not the most sturdy but it's typical of most palette drugstore packaging.

The wax is well waxy, sticky and creamy. Applied with a brush it doesn't pluck away my brow hairs unlike the pencils. The two powders are smooth and pigmented but not overly so. You might think that's bad but these aren't really supposed to be as pigmented as eyeshadows. Brow powders are usually not-so-pigmented so it's easier to build-up and there's lesser chance to over-do them.

The lightest colour in this dark brown palette is a nice light yellow-brown powder. This works best as the nose contour for light to medium skinned people. The second powder is a taupey medium-brown with a hint of purple and can look a bit red as a nose contour and as a brow powder by itself. The last colour is a dark chocolate brown wax. The outcome of this wax plus the darker powder yields a warmer brow colour. It's not ugly or weird against my hair colour per se, but I think I look better with cool toned dark brows. Cool toned brows look more natural against my natural hair colour.

Note : There are slight differences between the Asian, US and Europe versions. The 3D palette feature a wax, two powders for brow and nose contouring and a double ended brush. The US release features a wax, brow powder, brow highlight, a spoolie/screw brush and double ended brush. The EU release features the same contents as the US without the spoolie/screw brush.

The Mascara : Fashion Brow Mascara (Php 249)

Features an angle-free ball brush comb. A "Clump-free" brow mascara/gel that holds brows up to 12 hours. Gives brows a fuller look and natural colour. Comes in Dark Brown, Rusty Brown and Yellow Brown.

I really like this stuff. The ball brush tip — a minesweeper doppelganger—can take some getting used to but the finish and effect it gives more than makes up for it. It holds my brows in place throughout the day and tints it as well as the skin underneath and makes it look full. Personally I can wear this without doing the pencil or powder underneath.

I have it in dark brown and doesn't give me that red/orangey tinge. I have repurchased this already and I really like this better than the Nichido one.


What to get? | Recommendations

Get the Master Brow if you like waxy retractable pencils that hold your brows in place without the need for a brow mascara/gel.

Get the Brow Shaper Duo if you want a powder to set your pencil with to make it look more natural and make it last longer (K-Palette has something similar).

Get the 3D Contouring Palette if you prefer wax and powders that you apply with a brush. This palette has more versatility and control over how the brow looks. You get a nose contour and eyeshadows in a pinch as well.

Get the Fashion Brow Mascara if you have full brows and just want to tint them a little and/or make them neat. You can also use this over brow powders and pencils to make it look more full and natural apart from keeping it in place.


Personal Picks | Additional Info

I'd get the Brow Mascara (personally repurchased 2x) the Brow Palette a close second. The two pencils were too waxy for me and they PULLED OUT MY BROW HAIRS! :(

One thing to note about the pencils is that they are sealed in plastic when you buy them and all the information is on there. So when you lose that plastic (provided you can actually read the tiny condensed text) your shade colour, ingredients information, weight, manufacturing date etc are gone.

I mean you can google them and shiz but ain't nobody got time fo' dat. But to be honest it's not on Maybelline's website.

The Brow Palette isn't the best because the middle powder looks red on my brows by itself. The whole dark powder plus dark wax combo (or even just the wax) results in a warmer slightly unnatural looking brow because the hair on my head appears jet-black in comparison. It's workable but I wouldn't necessarily go out and buy it, if my hair were colored though I would definitely be singing a different tune. The Catrice Matt Palette works better for me because of the cool dark tones.

As for longevity, they all lasted well throughout the day. Heat + sweat and all that jazz. The pencils fare a notch better than the palette under heat, sweat etc. I don't get too oily throughout the day so my brows stay pretty much intact (I do get really sweaty though).

Have you tried any of these? Which one would you prefer to try?


Disclaimer : These were given to me by Maybelline and Calyxta as a gift. I was not paid/told/asked to write about or feature them in any way. Product images courtesy of Maybelline.

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Ah, FS Cosmetics. Makeup Artists' favorite local brand in the Philippines and many a beauty enthusiast's "right-of-passage" product.

It's usually one of the brands that makeup users / lovers here start with on their journey to makeup because of it's affordability, no-nonsense approach and efficacy.

Well they're back at it again with a rebrand : new name, new packaging, new formula and new products.
I was privy to the relaunch of FS Cosmetics / Features & Shades Cosmetics at last month's beauty rendezvous at this adorable-kitschy-urban-cool-looking bar + cafe.
Visit this cafe + bar when you get the chance!
The house was full of beauty bloggers, online influencers and cameramen tuning-in to the history of FS.
FS Assistant GM and Owner/GM answering the audience's burning questions about the formula and ingredients.
Owner & GM Edmon Ngo, revealing to us that their curlers, rival that of an internationally known Asian curler brand (care to guess which one?) and how to know if your curler is good quality. (psst check for screws under the pad)

I currently own one of these, and they don't pinch my eyes unlike the generic curlers I've tried before.
The makeup artist Yciar Castillo also did a live demo of  FS's products and relating to us that the concealer (and 2-way cake ?) is virtually waterproof once set and blended in.

No forealz, she even did a water (then tissue) test to prove it!
Amazing colour selection for Feature & Shade's eye shadow singles, now with matte packaging. You're also free to mix & match four shades and place it in a sleek matte palette.
These gorgeous bullets (reminiscent of MAC's Viva Glam line) are from their Nude Lipstick collection. They come in matte and creamy finishes.

And based on my swatch, they're very decently pigmented. The bullet themselves have a nice weight to them. Definitely doesn't feel "cheap" or "unsturdy". And I can say that for all of the products I've seen there.
left to right : swatches of three of the Nude Lipsticks, FS True Light Liquid Lipsticks (which come in glossy and demi-matte finishes) and the wide range of colours of FS's lipsticks.
The "Loose Powder Brush" or stippling brush which you can use for both liquids and powders, compacts or loose and dense Slanted Concealer Brush both brushes piqued my interest at the rendezvous.
FS kindly gave me a kit with some of their best-sellers and new products. Do you see the primer?

I'll be testing these out more but if you're interested here are my first impressions on some of them.

  • Mascarade Volumizing Mascara - Natural-volume. Doesn't sting. The formula is a little wet. I want to see if it'll change in a few weeks since I like drier formulas more.
  • FS Primer - Pore-filling silicone primer. Similar to Benefit's Porefessional, even the colour. It beads/bunches up as you rub it but it disappears eventually. No particular feelings about this yet.
  • FS Powder Blushes with Vit. E - GET THESE. THESE ARE GOOD. They come in matte and shimmery shades. The packaging is still glossy though, would've liked it if it were the same with the rest of the products with the matte black. I have mine in twinkle tan and it's a beautiful brown-tawny colour. Beautiful. Swatch it when you get the chance.
  • FS Loose Powder Brush - Love it. If you're looking for a stippling / duo fiber brush brush this'll do. This type of brush is very versatile in my opinion.
  • FS Single Eyeshadow in Ash Bronze - Smooth and very pigmented. True to the name it's an ashy type cool-toned brown.
  • FS Luscious Lipstick in Matte Brick - Gorgeous "push" packaging like how the Chanel Rouge Allure lipsticks open. Smooth. Matte. Amazing colour pay-off and no strong "old-timey lipstick" smell.
fs-features-and-shades-cosmetics-rebrand-relaunch-beauty-rendezvouz-14With the packaging, [supposed] formula upgrade, line extension and new product inclusions it's safe to say that Features & Shades is really coming-in for the kill in terms of playing with other local and international brands available in the market —whether they be drugstore, mid-range or high-end. I can't wait to see what else they have in store. :)

Have you tried this brand? How about the new products from FS?


PS. I can't confirm the formula upgrade since I don't have the "old" products in my possession.
PPS. Makeup Artist Fanny Serrano's contract with FS ended in 2011 explaining the name change. FS is owned by Cosmetics Revelation Corporation.

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