Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Have Your Nails Match the Heat This Summer with KBShimmer's New Seas The Day Collection

Press Sample

Happy hump day, dear readers! I had planned to get this post up first thing this morning, but my computer apparently had other plans for me. I had received the new KBShimmer Seas The Day Collection to review for you and had all 10 shades swatched, photographed, cropped and ready to go. I got the collection pretty far in advance, so I had been sitting on photos waiting to share until close to the launch date, and now all my individual swatch photos are missing. After hunting for them, the best I can figure is when my computer software was upgraded and updated, my previous backup wasn't current and my pictures are now gone. I've been unable to locate other things on my computer that were saved around the same time; needless to say, it has been a pretty upsetting day. That said, I'm making the most of it that I can with this post and sharing some quick photos and the nail art I have recently created with these polishes.

Your suitcase is packed, your flip flops are ready, and the ocean is calling your name: it's time for a vacation! Join KBShimmer on a tropical journey, where the drinks are chilled, the sun is warm, and bathing suits and shorts are the only attire.

This new 10-piece collection consists of 7 perfectly sun-faded neon hues and three multichrome flake toppers. I did get some quick swatches in so you can get a peek at these bright shades. Let's check those out first before we get into the nail art!

All the faded neon polishes are shown with two coats plus top coat. The formulas are a little trickier to work with, something that I expect with neon polishes, but application was easier for me as long as I used coats that were slightly thicker than I normally would use. For the flake toppers, these are with one coat plus top coat.

Bored Shorts a faded orchid purple that leans pink. 

Guava Nice Day a faded neon coral cream. 

Papaya Don't Preach a bright orange cream 

Pink Or Swim a bright, not quite neon pink cream polish

Party Like A Guac Star Like an avocado, bright shades of green, lime, soft pink and gold accent this flakie polish 

Off Tropic mimics that rainbow of hues with multichrome flakes that shift with every change of viewing angle. 

Harbor A Crush a soft blue cream inspired by ocean blue waters. 

Sand By Me a lemon yellow cream with a hint of neon. 

Lime All Right a pale green cream with a brightness that makes it work on any skin tone. 

Nauti Girl a multichrome flake polish that shifts from a daring fuchsia to leaf green with shades of orange and gold. 

I am really loving these soft neon hues, and the flake toppers definitely add something extra special to the nails. If you would like to check out more swatch photos, please visit My Nail Polish Obsession's blog post here!

Photo Courtesy of My Nail Polish Obsession

Photo Courtesy of My Nail Polish Obsession

Not only is Jen's blog post great for swatches, she has compared the shades from this collection with older KBShimmer shades. Do be aware, her post will make you want to track down some of these older shades as well!

I've been trying to do more nail art recently, and I have been playing with these polishes. Here are a couple looks I have created.

I really enjoy negative space designs, but I like my negative space to be, well, slightly less negative. The flakes in topper Off Tropic made for the perfect base I had in mind with this design. I paired it with Lime All Right and Papaya Don't Preach for this fun design.

I've always found that I really like neon nail art that involves random placements- it just feels so free not having to have an exact shape or be in a particular location! For this design, I started off with a white base and randomly placed strips of Harbor A Crush, Guava Nice Day, and Sand By Me. I love how the shades in this collection coordinate, and I am likely to do something similar with other colour combinations this summer!

I'm not including several photos of this one as it will be in its own dedicated blog post very soon, but I did want to mention it briefly in this post. I used both Bored Shorts and Pink Or Swim in this double stamped design over a white stamping polish and black base. I was actually pretty surprised to see that both showed up pretty well over both colours although they aren't ideal for stamping. The consistency is a little off so the image was a little distorted and didn't have an excellent transfer, but these aren't advertised as stamping polishes so I cannot fault them on that. This was just a little experiment with these polishes and did add a nice little touch of colour to the design.

The Seas The Day Collection will be launching Friday, June 14th at and select retailers. Each shade will retail $10. As a bonus, each order of $50 or more for the first week (June 14th through June 20th) placed at will receive the KBShimmer holographic drawstring bag. This is a great little bag to take to the beach- it is perfect to toss in your sunscreen, sunglasses, a water bottle, and a book for some fun summer reading lounging on the beach.

Are you excited to be adding neons into your summer nail wardrobe? Which shades have caught your attention? Will you be picking up any of the flake toppers as well? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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Monday, June 10, 2019

Testing Out Three Lipstick Shades From the New Jacyln Cosmetics Launch

Another weekend has come and gone in record speed, and here we are again, Monday! My weekend was very low key as I pretty much stayed close to home and avoided the outdoors during our 100°F+ degree days. We're supposed to be over 100°F every day this week, so I suppose that means summer in the desert has kicked in! Thankfully we have air conditioning in this house, unlike the last one we rented in Arizona. Now let's jump in on today's blog post.

If you've paid the slightest attention to the beauty community, you're likely already familiar with Beauty YouTuber Jaclyn Hill. I've never felt strongly about her, ether good or bad, but when I heard she was going to be releasing a nude lipstick line, I was definitely interested. As much as I love my reds, I've really been on the hunt for the perfect nude lippies recently. Despite my indifference to Jaclyn Hill, I like to see those in the beauty community succeed and knew I wanted to try out her line.

I opted to purchase three shades from Jaclyn Cosmetics during the launch. I bought Sofia, Fussy, and Independent.

When I first opened my package, I was in love with the initial presentation of the brand. Each bullet lipstick was contained my its own individually labeled box. The sides of the boxes have a textured criss cross pattern and I was loving how classy they looked. Unfortunately, this is about where I stopped being impressed.

The lipstick bullets are contained inside these silver hexagonal tubes. The sides of the tubes have a nice, smooth finish, a feature I appreciated after spending $18 on each of these. What did confuse me, and still does if I am being honest, is why the little emblem on the side is "JH", presumably for Jaclyn Hill but the brand is "Jaclyn Cosmetics."

On top of these bulky silver hexagon tubes are these gaudy "diamonds". I know everyone has their own aesthetic, but these lipsticks felt like they were a purchase from pre-teen store Claire's and not from a beauty influencer that is almost 30 years old. I love sparkle and shiny things, but this combination is a little too much. At the end of the day, this is still lipstick, and what is inside is what really matters. I didn't care that much about the packaging and figured I was in for a treat with a good quality product. And oh baby, was I wrong about that!

Left to Right: Sofia, Fussy, Independent

Full disclosure on how I handled these lipsticks: I received these in hand from the UPS driver upon delivery on a hot day approaching 90°F. Because I was a little concerned about possible melting while sitting in the truck, I placed my complete package in the freezer for 30 minutes and then left it out at room temperature for an hour before handling. This way I could ensure I would not be dealing with melted lipsticks but they would still be at "normal" temperatures during my first test.

Here is a look at my Jaclyn Cosmetics lipsticks right out of the box. While $18 isn't crazy expensive for a bullet lipstick, the price is certainly more than what I spend at the drugstore. As you can see, Sofia and Independent, the outer two lipsticks in the above photo, have weird little scrapings and pocket marks out of the bullet. I could not identify any areas inside the tube where these would have touched, nor did the bullets scrape the inside of the tube at any time while I twisted them. Because there is nothing about my tubes that indicate these melted some in transit (which is not a big deal for me given the high temperatures where I live), I strongly believe these were actually either cast like this and something happened when the bullets where placed inside the inner plastic casing of the tube.

In spite of my less than favorable first impressions, I fully expected to still enjoy these lipsticks and would only have aforementioned minor complaints.

Here is a look at what these lipsticks look like swatched on my skin. The differences between them are obviously quite subtle, but as anyone who has hunted for their perfect nude lipstick knows, the subtle differences can make or break your look. Ok, so that might be a slight exaggeration, but sometimes a nude lipstick can be just the slightest bit too pale or too pink or too purple or too.....well, just not quite right.

Let's get a look at each of these lipsticks.

Sofia is described as a dusty rose.

I really wanted to show how these lipsticks change my natural lip colour, so I have them swatched on only half my lips so you can see how it compares to my natural lip colour. The left side is my bare lip and the right, next to the Jaclyn Cosmetics lipstick tube, is the lipstick. I imagine that would be obvious enough without me explaining but wanted it to be clear here.

Sofia on my full lips

How pretty is this colour! I love this colour, but this is where that love ends. I took several photos of the lipstick bullets in different lighting and angles to share the quality control issues these lipsticks are sorely lacking.

Here is a closer look at the divots out of the bullet. Please ignore the slight terracotta discoloration on the side close to the tip. That is NOT an issue with this lipstick as I had layered it over a different lipstick prior to taking this photo.

After the first application, this lipstick feels like sand paper rubbing on the lips. Upon closer inspection, you can see pitting and tiny granules coming out from inside the lipstick. While I do exfoliate my lips almost every day, I do not want that effect from my lipstick. While I could not see any tiny hairs or fuzzies as others have since come forward about, my camera did capture some in these photos. I'm sure I don't have to explain just how gross and unhygienic this is for any cosmetic item regardless of whether or not it goes on the lips.

Fussy is described as chocolate mauve.

Left to right: Bare lip, Fussy

Fussy on my full lips

While a nice colour, Fussy was my least favorite colour out of these three lipsticks. There were formula issues with this one as well.

Fussy was initially the least problematic of this trio, but it still has the small granules. The bullet is a little firmer and less creamy so the scratching sensation on the lips is less uncomfortable but still present.

The colour Independent is described as praline. As an avid praline fan, I'm slightly disappointed it doesn't smell or taste like pralines!

Left side is my bare lip and right side is swatched with Independent.

This is Independent covering my lips. Sorry I didn't have a clearer photo to share!

I really love this colour as well! Again, my problem is with the formula when it comes to the Jaclyn Cosmetics brand.

Here is a closer look at the back of my lipstick bullet.

Once I used the lipstick, the pock marks and scratchy granules appeared. While I couldn't see any with my eyes, my camera captured what appears to be small fuzzies or hair embedded into the lipstick.

Here is a look at all three lipsticks after they have been used. As you can tell, there is clearly a problem with quality control. While Jaclyn Cosmetics claims these are supposed to be creamy, the sand paper nature of these indicate otherwise. They do feel comfortable and creamy once they are on the lips, but the process of getting them there is a whole other story.

So what went wrong? The only people that can truly answer that question is Jaclyn herself, but the most plausible theory is that these lipsticks are old and/or never underwent sufficient quality control testing. With the conflicting name brand (Jaclyn Cosmetics) with the "JH" logo, it is speculated that these lipsticks were made prior to Jaclyn's divorce from her husband and have been sitting for well over a year. This would make sense if the brand was initially planned to be "Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics" and would fit with the "JH" emblem. The granules may in part be a conglomeration of mango butter that has aged, although with a combination of white/clear and black granules, that does not explain it fully. The darker granules are NOT mango butter and I suspect to be plastic. The addition of fuzzies found in mine and many other consumers' tubes requires further explanation. Because they are embedded inside the lipsticks, this could only happen during the mixing and/or casting process. Jaclyn has stated that the facility where these were made used cloth gloves to make her lipsticks, but it would not be cost effective for a facility to use such gloves, especially given the added risk of contamination. If this is the case, which I seriously doubt, the facility is sorely lacking in sanitation and should not be in business. I suspect most of these fuzzies or hairs are actually mold filaments.

Even the fact that all three of these shades has the same batch code in spite of clearly being different colours makes me have a lot of questions. That just does not happen in an even remotely competent facility. The batch codes should be different between batches, and this serves to keep an eye on quality control in the event of something unpleasant happening, like every single lipstick on this post for example.

So where does this leave me with Jaclyn Cosmetics? Suffice it to say, as pretty as these lipsticks might be, there is something terribly wrong with these lipsticks and I strongly recommend avoiding them. They are clearly contaminated with something. I kind of wish my package came late so I could have seen some information that has come out from other people before putting them on my lips. I feel disgusted by this with my experience and horrified by the lack of action taken by Jaclyn Cosmetics. It is my opinion that every customer that has purchased these already should have notified about the problem and asked to return or destroy them immediately when these issues first came to light last week. Instead, the brand has taken a passive approach and waiting for customers to contact them first before any action is taken, be that a refund or getting a replacement. At this point, I feel that Jaclyn Cosmetics has been dishonest with customers. I cannot ascertain whether or not they were aware of the issues prior to launch, but now that they know, the little information that has come out is questionable and doesn't make any sense.

If you have purchased these products from Jaclyn Cosmetics, if your boxes or lipstick tubes are marked with the batch code GC05A, I urge you to not use them and pursue a refund. Please contact I know I will be doing the same thing so we'll see how long it takes for a refund to come through.

Have you picked up any lipsticks from Jaclyn Cosmetics? If so, how was your experience?

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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