Category Archives: Asian Brands

Missha Perfect Cover BB Cream Review & Swatches

Purchased – Affiliate Links

missha perfect cover bb cream

A few months ago, I decided that I wanted to try out another Korean BB Cream.  I previously reviewed the Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream, which I still really like – I just wanted to try something new!

Missha makes several BB Creams, and they have the following comparison chart (click to enlarge).  I settled on Missha’s Perfect Cover BB Cream, supposedly the best all-around choice.

Missha BB Cream comparison chart

click to enlarge

Perfect Cover BB Cream comes in five shades – 13, 21, 23, 27, 31 (light to dark). I couldn’t find good quality swatches of the different shades, but from the swatches I did find, I suspected that 21 might be too light and 23 too dark.  I also found Nouveau Cheap’s face photos of shade 21 helpful – as she says, it’s just a touch light for her, and I think she’s just a touch lighter than I am.

It also comes in two sizes – 50ml  / 1.6oz for $30, and 20ml / .67oz for $13 (Missha website prices, but note that they have great sales). So, I decided to purchase both 21 and 23 in the smaller size, with the idea that I would probably need to mix them.  I purchased from Ebay, and paid around $7.50 per item. I recommend rubyruby76 for all of your Korean makeup needs; they’re reliable.

Missha Perfect Cover BB Cream Swatches 21 23

Shade 21 // Shade 23

Above are semi-blended swatches of 21 and 23.  21 looks yellow-toned, and 23 looks golden beige.  23 looks like a better match for my arm at this point – at this time of year, my face is a similar color to my arm.

missha perfect cover bb cream swatches 21 23-2

Blended: Shade 21 // Shade 23

Blended out, Shade 21 is a much better match to my arm, but it’s not perfect – in person, it had a pinky-beige tone, which just would not show up in photos.  Shade 23 of course appears far too dark.  So, I did end up mixing shades for my face – more on that later.

Texture-wise, the Perfect Cover BB Cream is a thick cream. If I squeeze out a pea size amount on to the back of my hand and turn my hand upside down,the dollop of BB Creams stays intact.  It is very easy to spread and feels quite moisturizing, and I noticed that my skin stayed moisturized throughout the day – significantly more so than with most foundations.  I do use a separate moisturizer before, but I think if you had normal to slightly oily skin, that would be unnecessary.  If you have very oily skin, my guess is that the Perfect Cover BB Cream isn’t going to control oil well enough on it’s own for you – but perhaps it would work with an additional primer.

When I use Korean BB Creams, I apply more product than I do when I apply foundation, because I often don’t apply a separate sunscreen.*  I experimented some with this product, and settled on using a ratio of two parts 21 to one part 23, and a total of about two peas worth of product.

*I really should, because I don’t apply enough BB Cream for it to really work as sunscreen – you need a surprisingly large amount of sunscreen for it to be fully effective. Read more here if you are interested!

missha perfect cover bb cream swatches

No makeup // Missha Perfect Cover BB Cream

When first applied, the Missha Perfect Cover BB Cream looks quite pale and oddly colored, but after blending in and waiting about 30 seconds, it seems to adjust to my skin color and look great.  It has medium coverage and a natural finish – neither dewy nor matte.

As mentioned above, this BB Cream helps my skin stay hydrated while I wear it – and that’s probably my favorite thing about it.  I also really like the amount of coverage, and I’m very happy with the color match, even though I need to mix shades to get it. I suspect that I will be able to get a good color match in the summer by flipping the proportions – one part 21 to two parts 23.

Most foundations wear well on me, and this is no exception – it lasts all day all on me when set with powder (either my trusty Guerlain pressed or a new one I have been testing).

Overall, I love this BB Cream – I’ve been wearing it frequently, and I would highly recommend checking it out!
*I purchased the product(s) featured in this post. This post contains one or more affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.

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Eyebrow Product Comparison

brow productsThis is a quick post to compare how the three main eyebrow products I use look applied:

  • Anastasia Brow Powder Duo in Brunette, reviewed/swatched here
  • Browlash Water Strong W Eyebrow Pen, reviewed/swatched here
  • Make Up For Ever Aqua Brow, reviewed/swatched here

And the comparisons:

no eyebrow product

No eyebrow product

I have relatively full brows, but prefer a more defined look than I have naturally.

anastasia brow powder duo - applied

Anastasia powder

The powder is quickest and easiest to apply. It gives the softest look.

browlash

Browlash pen (pen side only)

I love everything about the Browlast pen – the color is perfect (a very cool grey-brown), and I love the defined, but natural, look it gives. It’s also the longest-lasting of the products.

aqua brow applied

MUFE Aqua Brow

Aqua Brow is a really nice product, but since I chose a dark shade it’s a bit tricky to apply (a lighter shade would have been more user-friendly).  I’m getting more comfortable with it, though!

What type of product do you use on your brows – pen, pencil, powder, cream, or another type?

Addiction Revenge, Flash Back, Sandbar, Safari Mode, Concrete Jungle Review & Swatches

My Addiction palette - one blush & four eyeshadows in Compact Case II

My Addiction palette – one blush & four eyeshadows in Compact Case II

I started this week off as Japanese Makeup Week, then got distracted, but now we’re back (and with a very long post). Today I have a review of one blush and four eyeshadows from the brand Addiction, which is exclusively available in Japan (sorry!).  You can actually buy it online worldwide on Ichibankao, but it’s marked up about 50%.  The best way to get it outside of Japan, and the way I got it, was to have a Japanese friend purchase it and mail it to me.

I really like the Addiction blush / eyeshadow packaging system – the blushes are exactly twice as big as the eyeshadows, and everything is easy to depot.  The packaging the products come in is actually quite nice – it looks like the palettes, but is flimsier.  The Compact Case I (which fits four eyeshadows) and Compact Case II (which fits six eyeshadows) are really gorgeous – the aesthetic is just my style, though do note that it holds fingerprints quite terribly. The lovely Kate of Drivel About Frivol has a better explanation with great photos here.

My Addiction purchases - boxed

My Addiction purchases – boxed

Addiction Revenge, Flash Back, Sandbar, Safari Mode, Concrete Jungle

Left – Revenge; Upper middle – Flash Back; Lower Middle – Sandbar;
Upper right – Safari Mode; Lower right – Concrete Jungle

I purchased six items; Revenge blush, Flash Back, Sandbar, Safari Mode, and Concrete Jungle eyeshadows, and the Compact Case II to hold everything.  Revenge is a matte pink-based red.  Flash Back is a metallic taupe.  Sandbar is hard for me to describe – it is sort of peachy in a heavy swatch, but a wash of shimmer on the lid.  Safari Mode is a khaki green satin.  Concrete Jungle is a purple-based grey  with a satin finish.  I have some shades that are similar to Revenge, Flash Back, and Sandbar, but the latter two shades are unique to my stash.

On to the swatches! First, I swatched the eyeshadows without primer, as is my standard practice – but I was slightly disappointed by the pigmentation level. It’s good – but not exceptional. And I’ve heard that Addiction makeup is exceptional.

Addiction swatches - Sandbar, Safari Mode, Concrete Jungle, Flash Back

No Primer: Sandbar // Safari Mode // Concrete Jungle // Flash Back

So, I also swatched them over primer. And, over primer, they look fantastic – complex, pigmented, and beautiful.  Apologies for swatching in a different order!

Addiction swatches - Flash Back , Sandbar, Safari Mode, Concrete Jungle,

Over NYX HD Primer: Flash Back // Sandbar // Safari Mode // Concrete Jungle

Here is Safari Mode on the eye.  I’m not wearing primer, but I’m wearing MAC Soft Ochre paint pot as a base. I’m wearing Prestige Total Intensity Eyeliner in Daring Green on my upper lash line & Prestige Total Intensity eyeliner in Intense Olive on my lower lash line. I don’t remember what mascara I’m wearing.  As you can see, Safari Mode is fairly subtle – more akin to the first, no primer swatch.  However, I didn’t try to pack it on – I’m sure I could have coaxed more intensity out of it if I had wanted to.

And, as requested, here’s a comparison of Addition Safari Mode and Inglot 419P – as you can see, they are quite similar in color, but the finish so different that they don’t really appear very much alike. The Inglot is highly pearlized, almost metallic, while the Addiction has more of a satin finish. This picture is a touch too yellow, as you can see from my skin, but still useful as a comparison.

left: Inglot 419P // right: Addiction Safari Mode

left: Inglot 419P // right: Addiction Safari Mode

On to the blush – Revenge has a very soft, smooth, and slightly dry texture.  It is not powdery, and the dryness doesn’t interfere with the use of the blush – it doesn’t appear dry on the skin; it’s just not a particularly buttery powder.  It’s very blendable – the reason the swatch doesn’t look particularly well blended is that I used a sponge tip applicator rather than a brush 🙂

Addiction Revenge swatch

Addiction Revenge

Here is a full-face swatch where I am wearing Revenge – I find it very flattering! My lips are Tarina Tarantinto Prong (review), and my eyes have several eyeshadows layered, but the main shade is Fyrinnae Shenanigans, used damp.

Both Revenge blush and the two eyeshadows I’ve tried, Safari Mode and Concrete Jungle, lasted all day.

Overall, I’m happy with my purchases. I don’t see Addiction becoming one of my go-to brands, both because it’s so hard to access and because I prefer a more buttery eyeshadow formula (vs. Addiction’s slightly dryer formula), but I do absolutely love all the colors I picked out!

Majolica Majorca BR799 Majolook Eyeshadow Palette Review & Swatches

Majolica Majorca BR799 Majolook

Majolica Majorca BR799 Majolook

One of my recent purchases from the Japanese import store I found is from Shiseido’s drugstore brand, Majolica Majorica.  This is my second Majolica Majorca product; the first was the Lash Expander Frame Plus mascara, which I like, but don’t love – it’s very lengthening but not volumizing enough for my taste! I still haven’t reviewed it – I’ll try to get to it eventually!

Moving on to the eyeshadow palette which is the actual subject of this review: it contains a white cream shade, and three powder shades – a pale peach shimmer, a gorgeous taupe, and a soft brown.  The shimmery white cream shade reminds me of the highlighter from NYC’s IndividualEyes palettes, which I reviewed here.  I don’t find it particularly useable – it doesn’t dry down, so it’s not a good base shade, and it’s too shimmery for my browbone. I can use it in the inner corner of my eye, as suggested by a reader, but I tend not to.

Each of the powder shades has a different texture.  The peach is very sheer and appears more as a light veil of sparkle than as a peach; if heavily layered, it does have more color.  The taupe is a very soft, creamy texture – it almost feels like a cream shadow. It reminds me of the texture of Shiseido’s eyeshadows, which makes sense since Shiseido owns Majolica Majorca.   I absolutely love the color of this one! The final shade is a medium-dark matte brown with specks of sparkle.

All three of the shades are easy to work with and smooth, though texture and pigmentation varies. I had no creasing over primer.

Overall, I think this palette is worth it just for the taupe shade, which is gorgeous! The other two powder shades are nice, but nothing out of the ordinary.

If you don’t have a local place to buy Japanese cosmetics, this palette is available on Amazon.com, and you may also want to check ebay.

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Browlash Water Strong W Eyebrow Review & Swatches

Browlash Ex Water Strong W Eyebrow

Browlash Ex Water Strong W Eyebrow

I recently discovered two different Japanese import shops near me, each with a huge selection of Japanese makeup and skincare items. I bought a few different items in each shop, so I have several upcoming reviews for you.  My favorite purchased item has to be the Browlash Ex Water Strong W Eyebrow dual ended pen and pencil – I’ve been using the pen end every day since I got it, and entirely abandoned my previous favorite, Anastasia Brow Powder duo in Brunette.

As you can see from the package, the pencil end of the package is intended for the inner eyebrows, and the pen end for the outer eyebrows.  However, I am not used to eyebrow pencils, and I haven’t figured out how to use the pencil end of this product effectively yet, though it seems to be of nice quality.  The pen end is extremely easy to use, so I’ve just been using it on my whole eyebrow.

The color I purchased is called “grey brown” – and is fantastic shade for my almost-black eyebrows.  As you can see below, the pencil end is brown, but the pen end is grey-brown.  The swatch immediately below shows one swipe of each end, plus a layered swatch of each end.  Then, I also have a before/ after of my eyebrows, using only the pen end.

Browlash Ex Water Strong W Eyebrow  - applied

no product // pen end of Browlash

As you can see, I could have done a slightly better job blending the pen into the inner corner of my eyebrow – I prefer that edge to be softer than it is in the photo. Still, I think the pen looks great – it adds definition to my browns, but looks very natural.

The pen end also lasts incredibly well – it lives up to the 24 hours claim on the package! I actually swatched the pen-end only yesterday afternoon, forgot to wash it off, and it was still intact this morning.  It had faded a bit, but did not smudge or flake.  It lasts just as well on my eyebrows – from application until I remove it, often 16 hours later.

Overall, I LOVE this product. It is easy to use, natural looking, and lasts very well – everything I look for in an eyebrow product! I highly recommend it.

If you don’t have a store that sells Japanese makeup near you, you can purchase Browlash Water Strong W Eyebrow on ebay or Sasa.com.  Please note that have never purchased from that seller or from Sasa.com, so I can’t personally recommend either source.

Little Tokyo Purchases

Yesterday I stopped by Los Angele’s Little Toyko to browse the Japanese cosmetics and skincare selections.   There are a couple of stores I like and recommend. Maneki Neko has a ton of both Western and Asian cosmetics, Asian skin care, as well as lots of toys and knicknacks.  Western brands they carry include NYX (the entire line, I think – with testers!), lots of Western nail polish brands (NYX Girls, LA Girls, OPI, Essie, Orly, and more).  I’m less familiar with the Asian brands, but I saw Missha BB creams (Korean), Dolly Wink makeup (Japanese), Pa nail polish and makeup (Japanese I think), and lots more – both makeup and skincare.  Make Asobi is another store I like. It’s almost entirely Asian products, both skincare and makeup. It has a wider selection of Asian (mostly Japanese and Korean, I believe) brands and products.  I saw Dolly Wink, Pa, Missha, Canmake, Majolica Majorica, and many more brands I didn’t recognize.

Herine Make Volume & Curl Mascara

I purchased two makeup items – first, Heroine Make Volume & Curl mascara.   Right now, Jordana Best Lash Extreme Volumizing mascara is my favorite mascara, but it’s not waterproof.  I’m looking for a good, volumizing and very waterproof mascara for occasional use.  I haven’t tried this one yet, but the brush looks promising, and Japanese waterproof mascaras tend to be much more waterproof than Western ones.

Dolly Wink Deep Black eyeliner

I’ve heard great things about Dolly Wink’s liquid / pen style eyeliner, so even though I have a black pen-style eyeliner I love (Milani’s LE Color Play), I wanted to give this one a try.  Again, I haven’t tried this on my eyes yet, but from an initial arm swatch it look fantastic – very black, and a very precise line. I will eventually do a comparison post with all of my black eyeliners, or perhaps a series of posts – liquid pen style, pencil, and gel.

Here are some quick arm swatches of the Dolly Wink eyeliner:

Do you like to explore the makeup from other countries, or are you content with what is easily available in your local stores?

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