Tips & Tricks: Hit Pan quicker in Eyeshadow Palettes

Me: Indian, MAC NC 40-42. Normal skin that is now veering towards dry as the years march on. I do not have sensitive, problematic or acne prone skin.

The answer is already there, just that we (I) choose to ignore it. Use the palettes for eyes, face and hair! Yes I know I said hair. I will explain more below.

NB: facial powders, especially newer formulations have hydrating ingredients in them, from blush to setting powders and eyeshadows are usually dryer formulations. (read my skin type disclaimer above) 

Eyeshadow palettes are like shoes. We collect them in multiples. But for some reason un-used eyeshadow palettes seem to cause me more anxiety than the shoes I don’t wear.

Time to end this passive aggressive, guilt inducing tyranny of these palettes. Let’s put them to work.

Whilst in the UK I used a Wet n Wild Color Icon palette as eyeshadow, setting powder, blush, bronzer and highlight. (Read post here) I love the simplicity of this practice and been continuing on the single palette trick even back home.

It’s a real thrill trying to use one palette and see how far it will go !

Viseart Petit Pro 1 Currently I am trying to hit pan in this and going whole hog.

Eyeshadow Viseart Petit Pro 1


I went to brunch and used this for eyes, contour and highlighter. The  khaki and the reddish brown mixed together make for a nice contour for my face and the white shimmer (below the white) as highlighter.

I used a mix of the gold and bronze shimmer on my eyes. The black as a ‘kohl’ liner. White on the brow bone.

I have also worn the purple shimmer, lightly, as a glowy blush.  Lightly being the operative word here.

In-fact across the board for eyeshadow palettes, use the shades LIGHTLY on the face and build it up. Even “lightly” pigmented shades on the eyes show up pretty bold on the face.

Viseart Paris Nudes I don’t own too many highlighters and definitely none from Mr and Mrs Popular (Jeffree Starr, Anastasia Beverly Hills) and every time I think ‘oh maybe I should get at-least one” I look at my Paris Nudes and think, ‘Nope. This is the best!’  This palette is my favourite ‘highlight and glowy blush’ palette.Eyeshadow Viseart Paris Nudes

Viseart shimmer shades receive a lot of flack for not being ‘shimmery’ enough. The lack of shimmer or glitter specks make for my kind of  perfect ‘glow’. ( read review of the Paris Nudes here)

The other versatile palette is Anastasia Beverly Hills Soft Glam.

Eyeshadow ABH Soft Glam
Top to bottom: Shimmer; Bronze, Sultry, Rose Pink, Glistening and Fairy

For my skintone I have a choice of 3 shades, Sienna, Rustic and Cyprus Umber that add dimension to my face.

Eyeshadow ABH Soft Glam

I layer or mix shades depending on what I am looking for on that day. Contour or bronzer?

On some days Sienna will do as both contour and blush. What I mean by that is it adds an interesting, yet natural colour and shape to my face.

I use a light dusting of Mulberry as a blush. It works for my skintone and more importantly, my undertone. But go LIGHT !!!

Dusty Rose also gives a nice soft flush to my cheeks.

Glistening and Rose Pink are my favourite highlighters from this palette. Glistening giving a ‘smoother’ finish.

Hair  Eyeshadows make for amazing root touch up! Obviously for greys and light hair. Root touch ups in the market make my hair greasy and stiff at the same time. I can feel that ‘waxy’ layer on the strands. Not eyeshadow.20181028_142810-1

Also the shadows don’t ‘run’  or transfer as I thought they would.

I used Dark Umber from Soft Glam to remove the starkness of the grey roots along the sides on my face.  The grey roots around my temples, especially when my hair is pulled back looks like I have bald patches along the sides. But not when I dust eyeshadow over them.

I have used purples and pinks too. Great fun!

The swatches done the back of my hands in this post look pretty scary, but on my face  they translate very well. It just looks like “makeup”.20181020_133239-1

So have fun, use what you have.Mag Pal Naked 3.001 I have even used that awful shade from Naked 3, DUST as a full on glitter highlight. It was a “embrace the glitter” moment I was having…and….I L.I.K.E.D it!

This is the beauty of makeup. It’s art, it’s creating, it’s discovery and it’s FUN.

I never thought I would EVER like glittery highlighter. And the best outcome of all I don’t need to buy blush, contour or highlighter for atleast….a year !

Colorpop Disney Collection: Eyeshadow & Lip Gloss; First Impressions

I have a weakness for dolls. Some of my best memories was a trip was to the Kolkatta Dolls Museum (Nehru Children’s Museum)  that my grandfather took me to when I was 8 years old.

dolls Museum
Image Courtesy:

Not Barbie and Industry ‘merch’,  but dolls like my Raggedy Ann or this precious Victorian porcelain doll. My Dolls

Next on my buy-list is a French regency doll and a female CLOWN doll. Just eff-y-eye clowns don’t scare me, I mean look at Raggedy Ann!!

So when dolls and makeup combine its a conspiracy, against me, obviously!

Screen Shot 2018-10-07 at 3.35.50 PM
Image Courtesy:

The story behind this Disney designer collection is interesting especially the ‘doll’ element of it.Disney Dolls.001

Sadly the dolls look like generic toy store costume dolls which does nothing for me.  I expected a more Fashion runway kind of an adaptation of that style.Disney Doll

Anyway I still wanted to own a piece of this story. So on the 7th of October 2018 (” hey No Buy how you going?”)  I hit SUBMIT on my order on

x1 Disney Princess eyeshadow palette and x1 Bibidi lip gloss.

Screen Shot 2018-10-07 at 5.34.24 PM

I would have bought this lipstick too if it wasn’t sold out ! Screen Shot 2018-10-07 at 5.22.01 PM

I love the palette because of the princesses on the cover. Without the princess artwork I wouldn’t have bought it. That’s the honest truth.Top Row.001

Chip: matte soft beige nude
Juju: matte warm rosy pink
Grumpy: matte dusty salmon
Triton: sand with a golden sheen –  I would call this a satin
Abu: matte intense warm brown – applies better on the eye than what I swatched.

All 5 shades, top row, are great even for an NC 40 Indian skintone like my eyelids. Usually it’s not easy for colours like these to make a difference on my lids but these shades do show up very distinctly.

Most specifically Chip. It is great for all over the lid and on my brow bone. It doesn’t come off ashy.

And Juju I LOVE. It is a very beautiful pink and not chalky. It gives me a nice contour in the crease. It’s good Juju!

Triton has a sheen and applied all over the lid is flattering for a subtle look. But I have used it in the crease too.

All of them are soft, pigmented and blend well. But you knew that already because everyone, excepting me, already owns atleast 1 colourpop palette 🙂

The shades I don’t like atall are Prince Charming and Fairy Godmother. 2nd row 1st and 3rd shade.IMG_5348I don’t like the glitter and the glitter fall out.  I applied both over the NYX glitter glue, with a dry flat synthetic brush, with wet flat synthetic brush and my fingers.

I wasn’t happy with any method.

Also I can see NO duochorome in Prince Charming, though it is described as such on the website. Fairy Godmother is definitely not ‘metal’ in my book (

Fairy Godmother can also be a bit patchy when applied wet.  Also as I was ‘dab dab dab-ing’ Fairy Godmother, it starts bright coral but then dusts away to a Barbie pink shade with glitter.

Ray: metallic champagne. 2nd row, 2nd shade.
One Kiss: metallic bright coppery gold. 2nd row, 4th shade
Thingamabob: vibrant metallic silver. 2nd row, 5th shade
Enchanted Rose: rich metallic rose. 3rd row, 1st shade

Gorgeous !!!

foiled metal.001These are beautiful metals. They are almost foiled. One Kiss described as a coppery gold is more yellow gold and Enchanted Rose looks more coppery on my lid.

What I am most impressed with is the silver foiled shadow. Silver is often patchy on me, with my melanin coming through but the Thingamabob formula is nicely opaque. Smooth tin foil eye lids if you like silver metals 🙂

The other WOW! shade is Poison Apple.

Poison Apple: metallic pinky violet

A beautiful pink violet. I would call it a satin. I wouldn’t hesitate to wear it on my lids blended out with Juju or Grumpy. It has a nice brightness that doesn’t ‘close’ my eyes.violet.001

Magic Carpet: blackened plum – A satin finish

Beast: deep warm brown topped with gold glitter
Midnight Curfew: black sprinkled with silver glitterIMG_5351

Magic Carpet is what I would call Eggplant. It has more of a satin finish without an overt sheen. It can be a bit difficult to blend, as this type of colour often is, so build it up slowly. I prefer it in the outer V because black is a bit much for me.

Beast and Midnight Curfew are easy to blend mattes even though they are pretty dark! Infact Beast, the dark brown seems to blend better than the dark brown in my ABH Soft Glam palette. Oh yes!

The glitter in these dark matte shades ? Who knows ? One of the great mysteries in eyeshadow palettes. They add nothing but the glitter doesn’t fall out either !

Oh wait the BLACK does have fall out so do your eye makeup first.

With regards to lasting power. I have difficulty giving an accurate account for this.

Example ABH Soft Glam doesn’t last well on me atall. I am at a point where I wonder what the big deal about ABH is ?

I wore these with the Urban Decay Anti Aging eye primer. I wore it for 4 hours and the lasting power along the inner eye crease was not too great. That is my trouble zone.

This could be two things 1. I think I might put too much primer on or 2. My notoriously oily lids.

All in all I like this palette and happy that this is my foray into Colorpop shadows!

Bibidi lip glossNow the ONLY product I like with glitter it seems, is lipgloss and/or lipstick! And that’s exactly what this lipgloss is. Clear with subtle particles of glitter. I like the look. It is definitely not too much glitter. Dare I say I would have preferred a little more glitter 🙂Untitled.001

It is sticky. Hair-will-stick-to-it sticky but not gloopy. I bought it because I wanted a clear gloss. I like the glitter and it’s part of the collection, so.

Guilty Secret: I am tempted to buy any MERCH of Elsa and Anna from Frozen. I don’t because, you know, I am an adult. Frozen



Cruelty Free Beauty: How I Started

I stopped applying makeup on my pets’ faces a while back. They looked like ‘ladies of the night’ frankly.Noor Zeb

Kidding obviously, because I have very high sanitary standards and would not contaminate my makeup with those furry beasts.

I started small. I have now been using body soap cakes for the past 15 years now, 9 out of 10 times apply toners with my palms or spray them on and rare-never use makeup wipes. I generally use rags a lot. (NB: You have to apply Tarte’s Tingling toner with a cotton ball or your fingers will burn off!)

Now for the animals. This is a very recent start for me. I know I had to at some point and that time is NOW.

I had to literally force myself to ‘see’ in my mind’s eye an animal in a testing lab in those cages. ( I still eat meat…so…)

While I am not a fan of how makeup can being returned in the US  ( landfill ) I do love more and more US brands are marching towards the leaping bunny logo.

Check below links. The best thing is we already own and love most of these brands. Yaaay!

The Leaping Bunny Logo is the only internationally recognized symbol guaranteeing consumers that no new animal tests were used in the development of any product displaying it. The Logo can be seen on packaging, advertising, and websites for cosmetics and household products around the world. 

A lot of people are critical when a brand calls itself CF but the parent company is not (Loreal) OR ingredients that were acquired from 3rd party suppliers are not CF (say Unilever’s supply chain). It’s a minefield.

I apply the gym philosophy ‘start by trying to run atleast 2 miles without stopping while keeping the goal 5 miles’. Baby steps. Also I don’t over analyze because that usually stops me from starting a journey.

Example ‘go ALL CF or not atall’. ‘Go CF and vegetarian or not atall.’  I will fail with such hardline boundaries and I don’t want to fail.

I am not going Vegan. As an Indian Hindu woman ‘ghee’ and dairy were drilled into my psyche. More than that I am going to be lusting after oysters and sushi for a long while more and I can not resist a plate of cheese and nuts.

Anyway I am looking at my makeup first. That for me is an easier switch before I look at skincare and toiletries.

Some of my go-to brands are questionable. MAC, Urban Decay, Maybelline and Loreal.

Other than the MAC Fix+ <sob> and OMG the Urban Decay GrindHouse sharpener the others are easily swapped.

Actually I will give up the Fix+, with both hands, before I give that sharpener up. Sorry bunny.

And then there is high end. This where the struggle is real. I really like Shu Uemura, YSL and Dior. YSL fragrance and lips, Dior face and Shu Uemura cleansing oils and their makeup aesthetic. Oh over-priced Shu Uemura cleansing oil, how I love thee.

I will give up this cleansing oil before I give up my Urban Decay sharpener.

Sorry bunny, but not really.

So my CF makeup start is fairly easy.

  1. I don’t have a vast collection so fewer traps.
  2. I don’t have strong brand loyalty with most makeup companies 🙂
  3. Most of the CF brands listed I already own and throughly enjoy.
  4. Questionable products from MAC and Maybelline I am going to use up and not re-purchase.

Oh MAC! I am literally getting teary eyed here. It’s like giving up my makeup security blanket. When all fails MAC is always there for me with their easily identifiable shade range. NC 40 is all I know 😦

My $80 Viseart palette will be with me for a while. I LOVE Viseart, unhappy bunny and all. But when I say I set small goals I mean it.

While I will not repurchase Viseart I will not guilt myself all the time I am going to use the palette I already own. I like their mattes and REALLY love their shimmers. Subtle and muted and age appropriate for me.

My dream of buying the Viseart Dark Mattes has been put to rest because I aint buying it.

What about Pat McGrath* and Huda Beauty’s Desert Dusk ? The answer is sadly NO.  I will sneak in a cheeky PmcG swatch in Sephora just so I know I have touched a PM palette and experienced its heavenly wonder.

Update: as per Pat McGrath website:

Are PAT McGRATH LABS products cruelty-free?
A: Pat McGrath Labs does not test our products or ingredients on animals.

What else ? I am trying to rack my brains to see if I have left something out. I know I am going to have to print the CF list out and paste it near my vanity. If not I know I will forget and get blinded by a Nars launch.

And oh, I don’t care how much of an activitist you are I AM going to re-purchase that Urban Decay Grind House sharpener.

Maybe they don’t sell that sharpener in China…













Favourite est-test Eyeshadow Palette: Wet and Wild Color Icon

I now own a small collection of Viseart, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Urban Decay and Smashbox eyeshadow palettes but before all that, I had bought myself 3 Wet n Wild Color Icon palettes.Anti Haul emily wants.002

Rose in the Air, Not Your Basic Peach and Comfort Zone.(see previous posts 2 of the palettes here and here)

But I never realised how much I loved these palettes till I had acquired the rest of my posse and I still reach for my WnW palettes the most.

I like the size of the palettes, I love their staying power (longer than my ABH Soft Galm) and their blendability. But I still had to switch between the different CI palettes for a look.

So I decided to create my own One-stop-Palette.

I binned the dud shades and then swapped shades around to create palettes that, for me, work as ‘complete’ palettes.WnW New Palettes.001

The Final Annihilation of Rose in the Air.  I killed everyone’s favourite dupe of ABH’s Modern Rennaissance. HAHA.Rose in the AIr

At a pinch the “new” Not Your Basic Peach is a complete day and ‘new” Comfort Zone is evening/night. WnW My Own Pale

Perfect travel palettes ! Size and colour scheme. You don’t need masses of time to think or plan the looks. I can’t be bothered to spend too much time on makeup when traveling. Places to visit, cuisines to eat.

Thanks to these WnW palettes, I am not in the least bit interested in buying those standard issue nude/neutral, warm palettes from Too Faced, Tarte and company.

Also not tempted by palettes that have that one pop of Green or Blue that draws in your eye and then your cash.

‘I have it ….ALL’, she said.

But it is massively sad too. I don’t get to try interesting releases!

Huda’s new Nude palette or Urban Decay’s Born to Run or Makeup Revolution’s Emily Noel Wants palette. WnW Fav POst.001

I kinda go towards them and then look at what I have and think…oh well nevermind.

I don’t feel the need to try other drugstore (or drugstore prices) staples either.  Colourpop, Rimmel, NYX, Flower Beauty, Milani etc etc. I am not researching into ‘drugstore eyeshadows’. I have WnW and it works great.

Once panned I will buy the ones I want to try. Urban Decay Born to Run, Huda Beauty Desert Dusk, Makeup Rev Wants, Juvia’s Place Masquerade and the like.

Mindless consumption aside, the quality of WnW to me fantastic and I have no idea why no one ever talks about them ????

Or have I got phenomenally oily lids and it is WnW’s ‘unique’ formula that works best on my kind of lids ? Whats the scoop ?









Brown Girl Highlight : Laura Geller Baked Gelato Swirl Illuminator

First off if you are an Indian skintone like me, MAC NC40-42, then be careful about picking up Gilded Honey. Unless you like a yellowy, champagne gold highlight, swatched it and made a personal decision to pick it up for yourself.

The reason I say this is because an almost knee jerk suggestion made by your friendly Makeup counter assistant is that of Gilded Honey. No doubt it IS the most popular highlight. ‘But for which skintone’ is The Question.

My shade, as was conceded by the lovely Ulta assistant, was the one I chose for myself. BALLERINA ! Rose gold but has more of a golden reflect on the face. My face.

And I prefer this gold to the more yellowy gold reflect of Gilded Honey.

I am very very V.E.R.Y picky about powder/pressed highlighters. I do not want to see even the tiniest speck of shimmer or micro glitter. And I look at my cheeks via a x5 magnifying mirror.

Just for reference I am not impressed with the finish of the pressed Becca Champagne pop highlighter.

Now the ‘sheen’ I want is, usually,  best delivered by liquid luminizers but powders are so much easier and quicker to apply.

Right off the bat I will tell you I like this highlighter over every other highlighter I swatched at Ulta, close second would be the ones in the Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess collection.

Colour preference aside lets say the Laura Geller one had the least amount of visible micro glitter.

Caveat: Makeup Revolution highlighters were not available to be swatched and the Dior Backstage face palette is not stocked at Ulta so I can not compare it with those.  Am eyeing the Dior Backstage though….

I have the Hourglass Ambient Light Edit and the Elf Blushed Gems. When I want something with a little more pop than the Hourglass edit the ELF is an option. However I can see micro glitter particles. I OCD over it.

Hourglass and ELF

I have tried to buff it, I have applied it wet, I have buffed over it with a wet brush and even used a damp sponge to ‘dab dab dab’ But I can still see the particles…

With the Laura Geller highlight my cheek bones pop and there is marginal visible particles.

Colour wise my win win choice would be if Ballerina was a more bronzey-rosey tone like that of Blushed Gems but….. it’s only makeup and no one really cares 🙂

In conclusion this is a happy purchase for me.

Now some of you will think “yea so what happened to your No Buy?”

Well I was invited to accompany a 13 y/o and we stood in line waiting for the doors to open for Ulta Beauty’s Kirkland grand opening …ALL… so we could get a ‘free’ gift.

My gift was a $10 off coupon. What did you want me to do ? I am not a Saint!